Jethro Tull's Ian Anderson visits Berkshire church where the real Jethro Tull is buried

The founder member of prog-rock band Jethro Tull, Ian Anderson, paid a special visit to The Churches Conservation Trust's St Bartholomew’s Church in Lower Basildon, Berkshire, earlier today to see a memorial of the band’s namesake, who is buried at the church.

The 18th century agriculturalist Jethro Tull is celebrated as the ‘father of modern farming’, and is famous for perfecting the horse drawn seed drill in 1701. Tull is the subject of Ian Anderson’s new project, ‘Jethro Tull - A Rock Opera’, which features songs from the band’s back catalogue, reimagining the agriculturist’s life in the near future. 

Speaking before Ian's visit, Crispin Truman, Chief Executive of The Churches Conservation Trust, explains: ‘Each of the 347 churches that The Churches Conservation Trust cares for has their own story to tell. I’m delighted to welcome Ian Anderson to 700 year old St Bartholomew’s where Jethro Tull - who revolutionised modern agriculture - is commemorated. Personally I’m also a bit of a fan of ‘the Tull’ so can’t wait to share this and other stories with Ian!’

Following the visit, Ian Anderson said: ""What a poignant and happy trip to St Bartholomew's in Lower Basildon to visit the resting place of Jethro Tull. I even tootled on my flute for him. Paying my respects to the man of agricultural science and engineering was long overdue.""

Zoe Pike, a volunteer with The Churches Conservation Trust  is currently developing a scheme of interpretation for St Bartholomew’s which will allow visitors to learn more about Tull’s life and his connections with the church and local area. Additional volunteer support is needed in researching, marketing and planning this project. Anyone interested should contact Ed McGregor, The CCT’s Volunteering Officer emcgregor@thecct.org.uk

St Bartholomew’s Church is cared for by The Churches Conservation Trust and is open to visitors daily between 9am and 5pm. The church is a venue for regular community events, including the upcoming Harvest Evensong and Hog Roast on Sunday 4th October at 6pm.

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