The Dickens Fellowship, founded in 1902, is a worldwide association of people who share an interest in the life and works of Charles Dickens (1812 - 1870). For more information about our organisation visit the organisation page.

The DF can be contacted at: postbox@dickensfellowship.org.  Please address any queries or comments about this website or the Dickens Fellowship generally to this address.

Please direct any queries about Dickens's life, works, later reputation and interpretation – and also any enquiries concerning the Fellowship’s history to: WTo1@aol.com.

For the latest news and comment, please refer to Household Words at the lower left of this page. Use the Search Box in the upper right to enter a word or phrase to search the entire site.

Message from the President

Subscribe to The Dickensian and enjoy free access online to all issues from 1905 onwards.


The Dickensian's back issues, from 1905 onwards, are available electronically, and word-searchable, through ProQuest publishers. Individual subscribers to The Dickensian are given complimentary access to these online resources, for personal use only, by application to Geoff Dicks geoffrey.dicks@btinternet.com

2015 Dickens Fellowship Annual Conference

The 2015 Annual Conference of the Dickens Fellowship will be hosted by the Bristol and Clifton Dickens Society at Wills Hall (pictured) in Stoke Bishop, Bristol, between Thursday 23rd and Tuesday 28th July.  The programme and booking form are now available on the Branch website. The organisers request that a deposit on behalf of all those intending to attend be paid by mid February. More details are available at the conference website.

 

Dickens Day 2015 at London University - A Call For Papers

The annual Dickens Day at London University will take place on Saturday 10 October.  The theme this year will be: Dickens, Readers and Reading.

A call for papers has now been issued and is accessible via this link:  http://events.sas.ac.uk/ies/events/view/18306

Summer Events from the Charles Dickens Museum

Please remember to use your 10% discount code if you are a friend of the Museum!

Doctor Marigold’s Prescriptions

Fresh from last year’s success at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival, performer Ian Pearce brings this heart-warming and colourful Dickens tale to life in Doctor Marigold’s breathless sales patter!

Doctor Marigold, named after the doctor who delivered him, is a “cheap-jack” who hawks sundries from a travelling cart he inhabits with his wife and his daughter Sophy.

The story follows the rise and fall of his fortunes, his adoption of a mute circus girl, love, loss and hope, delivering on all of the wonderful twists and turns we have come to expect of a Dickens classic.

Sat 11 Jul
Performances at 14:00 and 17:00
Tickets: £15

Dickensian Walks

Explore the streets and alleyways where many of Dickens greatest novels unfolded. As you move through the streets of Victorian London, you’ll be following in the footsteps of some of literature’s most memorable and enduring characters!

These fantastic costumed walks provide a unique opportunity to examine the life of Dickens through visiting places that shaped his life – from humble beginnings to his legacy as one of Britain’s greatest literary figures.

Walk leader Richard Jones is author of the definitive guide book Walking Dickensian London. A qualified Blue Badge Tourist Guide, Richard has been giving tours of Dickens’s London since 1982 and is known for both his entertaining delivery and his encyclopaedic knowledge of Dickens.

Using excerpts from Dickens’s novels, insights from those who knew Dickens personally and his own expert knowledge, Richard aims to bring Dickens’s London to life for those who join him on his walks!

Every Wednesday in May, June and July
11:30 and 17:00
£10 per person
Walks take approximately an hour and a half, starting at the Charles Dickens Museum and ending near Holborn Circus.
 

Dickens desk and chair purchased by The Charles Dickens Museum

The Charles Dickens Museum in Doughty Street has announced the purchase of the desk and chair that was owned and used by Dickens during his time living in Gad’s Hill Place.  They are those featured in the famous painting by Luke Fildes of ‘The Empty Chair’ (below).

The purchase was facilitated by the National Heritage Memorial Fund who donated £784,000 towards the acquisition and conservation costs. Further contributions came from the Robert Gavron Charitable Trust and the Dickens Fellowship, which was pleased to donate £10,000 to enable the purchase to be completed. A press release by the NHMF is attached.

The donation by the Dickens Fellowship is in accordance with one of the principal aims of the Fellowship: “to assist in the preservation and purchase of buildings and objects associated with (Dickens’s) name or mentioned in his works.’ No objects can be more iconic for any writer than the desk at which they worked or the chair on which they sat to do so.
 
Charles Dickens Chair and Desk

Coram Historic Lunchtime Walks

We would like to invite you to our series of Coram historic lunchtime walks.

Due to popular demand, the walks, led by Coram’s Social History Editor, are becoming a regular, monthly event, usually on the last Friday in the month.

The walks are held at lunchtime and last approximately 45 minutes. Beginning at the Thomas Coram statue outside Coram headquarters in Brunswick Square, they take in the Foundling Hospital site and the places where, during our 275-year history, our governors, friends and supporters lived. Along the way we find out about Charles Dickens, our royal connections, the first London traffic by-pass, and how this part of Bloomsbury became the centre for child health and welfare.
We end with tea and free gingerbread in Coram’s headquarters. Coram is the charity that continues the work of the Foundling Hospital today. We help a million children every year to develop their skills and emotional health, find adoptive families and uphold their rights.

We would love it if you could join us on this – or a future  walk. They are absolutely free.

We’d be absolutely delighted if you are able to attend. Please do let us know if you think you can make it by registering for a free ticket using the Eventbrite link on a date which suits you.

www.coram.org.uk/maywalk

www.coram.org.uk/junewalk

Dickens and Beadnell reunited in Doughty Street

The Charles Dickens Museum are currently staging a small exhibition entitled: 'Dickens's First Love'. It focuses on the true story of the young Dickens and his first love Maria Beadnell (later immortalised as Dora Spenlow in ‘David Copperfield’ and Flora Finching in ‘Little Dorrit’). The exhibition provides a unique opportunity to see Dickens's very first literary efforts: love poems about Maria and comic verse composed for her sister Anne.

A Dickens-Beadnell union was never to be, but four generations later Mark Dickens, great-great grandson of Charles Dickens, formed a lifetime friendship with Nick Beadnell, a direct descendant of the Beadnell family.  Mark says “We were close friends and uncannily born on exactly the same day, but it was not until much later that we both realised the family connection.  I was honoured to be the best man at his wedding and thus reunite the two families once again.  I am delighted that this exhibition highlights an area of Dickens’s life that does not get discussed very often”.

 

 

Mark Dickens (left) and Nick Beadnell beside portraits of their famous relatives at the Charles Dickens Museum.

Dickens Secondary Schools Prize Launched

The Dickens Fellowship, in  association with the English Association, will again sponsor the Secondary Schools Dickens Competition. Dickens’s journalism will be the focus in 2015. The competition is open to all UK students between 14 and 16, and to students abroad taking GCSE or IGCSE examinations. For further information see the attached guidance note.

This Web Site is dedicated to the late Martha Rosso  (1922 - 2003)

A member of the Philadelphia Branch for over 35 years, Martha Rosso (née Pamplin) was one of the Fellowship's most dynamic and best loved figures. She contributed unstintingly to its business right to the very end of her life. Click here to read more about Martha Rosso.