welcome to the friends of tilling

The Friends of Tilling was formed by Darren Reynolds and Jonathan Dunlop in order to organise an annual Gathering, a tradition started in 1982 by the Tilling Society. The Gatherings bring together all Mapp & Lucia devotees to revel in the world of Tilling and remember the life of its creator E F Benson. We are delighted to have Gyles Brandreth as our president and as vice president the writer and novelist  Alexander McCall Smith CBE. 



10 years of the friends of tilling

2014 marked the tenth anniversary of The Friends of Tilling but annual Gatherings celebrating E F Benson's Mapp & Lucia novels have been taking place in Rye since 1982.



We have some exciting news to share from Friend of Tilling Kate Garner. Members who attended our Gathering last year will remember her wonderful songs from a Mapp & Lucia musical she is busy writing. London based musical producers Runaway Entertainment are developing it and we are encouraged to hope that we will soon be able to see it performed.




To celebrate the 150th anniversary of E F Benson's birth we are delighted to make available Tilling Tales - a collection of stories featured at recent Gatherings by Tom Holt, Elizabeth French and Darren Reynolds.

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The 2020 gathering

The next Gathering takes place on Saturday 5th September 2020.  Join here and follow us on Twitter for updates.


The Tilling Gazette

The latest edition of our journal, The Tilling Gazette is finally ready and currently being sent out to members. We hope you think the wait was worthwhile.