A woman with shoulder length brown hair standing in font of a glass case filled with manuscripts and maps.

Join curator Sarah Harvey to explore author JA Baker’s life, writing and love of nature on a special Heritage Open Days tour of the exhibition, Restless Brilliance: The Story of J.A. Baker and The Peregrineat Chelmsford MuseumThe exhibition brings the Baker Archive, held by the Albert Sloman Library, University of Essex, back to Baker’s hometown and is the first time that this archive has been on public display.

Author John Alec Baker (1926 – 1987) was born, and lived almost his whole life, in Chelmsford. His best known work, The Peregrine, was first published in 1967 and was an immediate success. Reviews called it a masterpiece of nature writing and it won several awards. Since then, Baker’s unique poetic writing has continued to inspire a new generation of nature writers and naturalists but despite all this success, very little was known about Baker himself.

His writing is based on walks and cycle rides around the Blackwater estuary, Danbury Hill and the Chelmsford area. Here he followed and studied peregrine falcons, condensing all his observations into the book The Peregrine.