Robert Bloomfield (1766-1823) was the most successful of the self-taught 'peasant poets' of the Romantic period. His first book, The Farmer's Boy (1800), sold 26,000 copies and went through seven editions within three years of publication. Admired by Wordsworth and John Clare, who called Bloomfield 'our English Theocritus', Bloomfield's poetry fell out of favour in the twentieth-century, though recent years have seen a revival of popular and academic interest in his life and works.

The Robert Bloomfield Society was established in 2000 to encourage and promote interest in this unjustly neglected figure.

Membership of the Society entitles you to receive its Newsletter and to participate in events organised by the Society.

Our Newsletter, issued twice a year, is a respected source of authoritative information about Bloomfield and covers news of the Society's activities.The Society holds an annual Bloomfield Day at which the wide range of his writings and other interests is explored, as well as his historical and social background. At this event the opportunity is also taken to review the year's activities and to discuss the Society's future plans.

In addition, each year we organise at least one social event, usually involving a visit to locations identified with Bloomfield. In previous years we have toured Bloomfield's Suffolk, the Bedfordshire locations where he spent his latter days, and visited the British Library for an introduction to their extensive Bloomfield holdings.  In 2007 we paid a commemorative visit to the Wye Valley, which Robert toured 200 years earlier, recording his experiences in his poem The Banks of Wye (1811).

Bloomfield's standing among his Romantic contemporaries has until recently suffered from a dearth of up-to-date scholarly biographical and critical writings. To help remedy this, the Society encourages the publication of work relating to the poet. Society members have been involved in producing a revised edition of his Selected Poems, published by Trent Editions, a web-based edition of his letters, a collection of essays, Robert Bloomfield: Lyric, Class and the Romantic Canon, a critical study of his life and work by Simon J. White, and a CD of a reading of The Farmer's Boy.

In the Society's view it is important to help young people appreciate and be informed about poets such as Bloomfield, and it is supporting the Robert Bloomfield Academy in Shefford through an annual award for creative writing.

Commemorative plaque in All Saints Church, Campton