Introducing The Wessex Project: Thomas Hardy, Architect

Thomas Hardy is one of England’s greatest novelists and poets, known for works such as Tess of the d'Urbervilles and Far from the Madding Crowd and whose part-real, part-imaginary realm of Wessex has taken on a life of its own. But his first career in architecture has often been seen as perverse or contradictory. The assumption has been: he changed career because he wasn't much of an architect.

The Wessex Project: Thomas Hardy, Architect is the first book to study Hardy from an architectural perspective, offering startling insights into a man who never stopped thinking, writing and working as an architect. It reveals a biting commentator on the architectural debates of his day; the most influential conservation writer there has ever been; and his experiments in architectural representation – which would still be radical a century later. Linking writing, maps, images, polemic and buildings, Wessex appears as a remarkable, entirely architectural project that shapes the way we see, imagine and build England to this day. 


Engagingly written by Professor Kester Rattenbury of the School of Architecture at the University of Westminster, this book provides new insights into Hardy’s work and how it has shaped England.


The Wessex Project can be ordered now from our website