September 27th, 2016

Devotees return to Croome

HARE Krishnas are set to return to Croome Court more than 30 years after they sold the National Trust mansion house in the 1980s.

A weekend of singing, dance, culture and music will set to take place at the popular property tomorrow and Sunday (September 19 and 20).

The International Society for Krishna Consciousness (ISKCON) bought Croome Court in 1979 when famous devotee, George Harrison, reputedly released funds for the purchase to use the Grade I listed mansion as their headquarters.

After stamping their own unique mark on the house, which can be seen in the colourful painted decoration of the Dining Room, they chose to relocate in Watford at Bhaktivedanta Manor which was also bought for them by the world-famous Beatles lead guitarist.

Croome’s Hare Krishna event welcomes some of the devotees’ return for the weekend in a celebration of this fascinating period in Croome’s eclectic history.

This year sees the reintroduction of the Hare Krishna connection with the Rotunda where visitors can follow the new route to this beautiful spot for an aural and visual feast in this iconic building that once served the community as performance space, classroom and art studio.

“It’s great to have some of the devotees return to Croome as part of our Hidden Heritage programme to share their stories with our visitors over the weekend,” said Becky Wilks, Events Officer.

“There’ll be lots to see and do during this colourful weekend and a completely unique experience for everyone that joins us.”

Nathan Hartley from ISKCON Festivals said: “The manor house, and beautiful surroundings, play a significant part in the history of the Hare Krishna movement here in the UK.

“Home to many Krishna devotees in the ‘70s and 80’s, Croome Court will always be a place full of fond memories for those who lived, worked and played there.

“During our movement’s brief five-year stay we worked hard to establish an alternative, natural life-style on the estate.

“Based on ancient spiritual teachings of yoga and philosophy from the Vedic culture of India, Croome became a temple, ashram, school and farm.

“What makes this year’s Hare Krishna weekend extra special is that it falls within the year-long celebration to mark 50 years since the founding of ISKCON by Srila Prabhupada.

“This half-century milestone for the Hare Krishna movement in the western world is something we look forward to sharing with others as part of the upcoming weekend at Croome,” he added.

There is free entry to the main event and free parking for all visitors during this weekend while normal admission applies for entry to the house and parkland. The event runs from 10am to 5pm each day.

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