When I was a child, my grandmother advised me to be truthful, always using the exact words in my title ‘Tell the truth and shame the devil’. It seemed like excellent advice, although I couldn’t follow it at that stage in my life. Now, I not only can. I must. And the truth I must tell and tell as clearly as possible is in answer to a painful question. Is anybody prepared to do anything at all or to put it another way, does anyone have the power to save Blake’s cottage? My sight and ability to walk are now so poor, I can’t tramp about Felpham gathering signed petition forms and encouraging people to take more of them in the way I did last time. And Rachel Searle, the leader of the seven sturdy campaigners, who collected money to help buy the cottage when it was first put up for sale and called themselves The Big Blake Project appeared, when I wrote the first draft of this blog to be distancing her self from it, but she has been in touch with me since and told me a lot more about what happened when the trust was set up which reveals quite another picture and needs an apology, which I hereby give very gladly.
The truth of the matter is she was told by Tim Heath after the cottage had been bought in secret, that there was no room for her or anyone else from the Big Blake Project who should expect to be given a trusteeship. He had taken the money and set up the independent’ Blake Cottage Trust in secret and Rachel Searle tells me, she challenged the accountability and composition of the Trust at the following AGM of the Blake Society. Tim Heath’s answer was very revealing, he said ‘three is the correct number of trustees and when we go we will appoint others in our image.‘
And now the same Tim Heath, the self appointed Chairman of the three man Blake’s Cottage Trust has walked away from it himself. In the last six years the cottage has been more and more in need of repair and NOTHING HAS BEEN DONE. Now he has persuaded the authorities at Charterhouse in Central London to give him a room in which he can live for free with his meals provided and I think he has either moved into it or he is just about to. He made provision of sorts for the cottage by appointing two new Trustees called Johnathan Mullard and Jason Whittaker, ‘so three wasn’t the allotted number. These two seem to be no different from the others. They have told the public the same mish-mash of untruthful information, have a fallen into the habit of saying a lot and meaning very little and have DONE NOTHING at all about the Cottage. So the building goes on visibly deteriorating, so visibly that passers by notice the terrible state of it and write to tell me about it. It breaks my heart, because at the moment there is nothing I can do. Nothing anybody can do, while Tim Heath is still in position as the Chairman of the Blake Cottage Trust. A position I might say, that he awarded himself, just as he awarded himself a similar position as the Chairman of the Blake Society.
This picture of him was taken in the street after a session in the courts, where his brothers, who are two top doctors, were contesting their mothers will. There had been a bitter row with Timothy over their dead mother’s £1.8 million fortune.
According to the Daily Mail “Dominic and Jeremy Heath left their parents’ £1.5million house in leafy Hampstead, as young men, each forging successful careers in medicine.”
Timothy on the other hand went on living in their parent’s house, never flew the nest and never did a day’s work.
And now he is the person who has the power to repair Blake’s Cottage or conversely, very conversely, the power to refuse to do it.
For those to whom all this is new, especially those who live in the Felpham area, I should tell you, that I wrote a booklet detailing all this messy history some time ago, called ‘If Blake’s Cottage had a voice, it would cry help!’ It sold well from Felpham Post office and I still have a few copies in my office, although I no longer have the legs to take me to Felpham and to the post office with further copies.
But the question still remains, WHAT CAN ANYBODY DO?
Suggestions welcomed! Phone me or visit me if it would be helpful.