The music room
The book room
The back of the cottage
Nothing in Clouds Hill is to be a care upon the world. While I have it there shall be nothing exquisite or unique in it. Nothing to anchor me. - T. E. Lawrence
T.E. Lawrence, using the name Shaw to avoid publicity, rented Clouds Hill in 1923 as a retreat from nearby Bovington Camp when he rejoined the Air Force. In 1925 Lawrence bought the cottage and it became his earthly paradise. He did not sleep at the cottage but spent evenings there reading, writing and listening to Beethoven and Mozart.
The tiny rooms* of Clouds Hill are as Lawrence left them with simple and austere furnishings, some of which he made himself. The cottage reflects his complex personality and monastic way of life. The crowded book room is lined with shelves from floor to ceiling. It is here that Lawrence found the peace and quiet he needed to work on his Seven Pillars of Wisdom, which was published in 1926.
In 1935 Lawrence was discharged at the age of 46 from the Air Force and returned to Clouds Hill to live out his days. Five days later he was killed in a motorcycle crash when returning to Clouds Hill from Bovington Camp.
Clouds Hill, the rural retreat of T. E. Lawrence, is now a part of Britain's National Trust.
Of further possible interest -
Lawrence of Dorset: From Arabia to Clouds Hill by Rodney Legg
Journal of the T. E. Lawrence Society
*It was one of these tiny rooms, specifically the cork lined bathroom, that inspired the kitchen in W1.
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