Saved from Camelot Castle Hotel’s ‘artist in residence’ Scientology recruitment scheme

Interesting post from the US reveals WWP information saves vulnerable artist from potential exploitation

Throughout this campaign, we’ve been very clear about trying to help stop vulnerable people getting ‘hit on’ by Scientologists John Mappin and Ted Stourton. This post (from Why We Protest forum) makes it very real for us

“(Long post– I apologize)
Hi everyone, I’m new here and I just wanted to add my thoughts to this thread. I had heard about the Camelot Castle about 3 or 4 years ago (maybe longer) from another artist friend through an online artists’ group. She provided a link to CCH and their artists-in-residence program, where artists could stay for free. At the time, they were billing the place as a kind of commune for artists such as Ted where they could create art and be inspired by their surroundings. They portrayed the castle and surroundings as magical and inspirational, and as Ted was an artist and John was a composer, they wanted to encourage the arts for other artists and give them a break and some support.

I thought, “How fantastic! I would _love_ to be able to stay in a place like that for free (figuring I’d of course have to take care of my meals and actually getting there) to spend some time working on my art.” So I tried to contact them via email (I’m in the U.S.) about the program but never heard back.

I would check in via the website link from time to time and see if anything new was happening (there wasn’t usually) and I would check train and bus options to figure out how to get there if I ever got up the airfare. I emailed a couple of times inquiring about the a-i-r program and never heard anything.

At one point, I received an email about a new direction they were going with art, where they were encouraging artists everywhere to create ‘places of inspiration’ all over the world, and to even acquire property to turn into these places, like they did with CCH. And I thought that was fantastic, too, and sent yet another email saying so.

I still received no response, but a short time after I received the email about the whole Scientology thing (I guess I made it onto the email list, because I regularly receive emails now– but they never say anything about the a-i-r program).

I didn’t think too much about the Scientology thing, mostly because I just don’t really care, I was more interested in the whole artistic movement thing. I received an email from John Mappin about Jim Carrey and a foundation he started with a link to it saying how he was a ‘Friend of CC’ and was joining them and supporting them in their ‘mission’ and they thanked him for his efforts. (Jim Carrey is not a Scientologist: Celebrity Critics of Scientology)

I went to Jim’s site, and it is a very nice site with a very nice message about doing charitable things around the world, but he never once mentions CCH, or Scientology at all. Again, I didn’t think much about that. Better U Foundation

I also received an email about Ted’s inclusion in an artistic art compilation. I thought that was nice for him, and didn’t look further into it (I still have all these emails in case anyone wants them). It’s too bad that it’s from a vanity press. (As an artist I have been approached by some of these things, too, but know them for what they are and ignore them.)

Today I was about to mention CCH and its a-i-r program to another group of artists, and wanted to make sure I had the right link, so I googled it, and up popped your forum.

I can’t tell you how disappointed I am to hear the reviews and back story about these people and CCH. While I don’t care for Scientology myself, I don’t care if someone else wants to be part of it. I definitely do not want to spend my time there being hassled about it. I do not like the whole artistic movement being a lie and a front for a wacko organization. I’m sure some Scientologists are plain and simple very nice people, but I really dislike misrepresentation, and I despise when people delete uncomplimentary reviews and put up fake ones.

While I really hope that things aren’t as bad as portrayed here, I am grateful that I have heard these stories before I’ve wasted any more time trying to get into this artist-in-residence program, and I’m certainly glad I haven’t found myself stranded 4,000 miles away.

I am very disappointed that what I thought was a great artistic movement and sponsorship program is turning out to be a fraud. The whole idea of how they portrayed CCH as an artist’s commune I thought was wonderful, and I really wish that’s what was really happening there. :(“

2 Responses to “Saved from Camelot Castle Hotel’s ‘artist in residence’ Scientology recruitment scheme”
  1. D***** H****** says:

    I knew Edward Corbally Stourton many years ago, as a wonderful person and a huge character and a dear friend …. his beautiful home in London that he designed…… and his grandmother’s home where I spent the weekend ….. I am sure he is still a wonderful person ….. but involved in something that has ‘overwhelmed’ him …. but that could happen to any of us …..I really dislike scientology, I have followed Edward’s story … I wish him the best ……… D******

  2. Hi D******, thanks for commenting. From what I’ve heard about Scientology people eventually fall out the back end of it… not before it’s ruined their lives though. Sorry if you’ve lost an old friend, we sincerely hope you have a reconciliation with him one day.

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