A writing completion was held to coincide with the 2016 Fellowship Conference in Aberdeen. The eight stories adjudged the best can be read via the attachment. All the stories were inspired either by the works of Dickens or by the conference theme of ‘Conviviality’. Our thanks are extended to all those who submitted entries.
Dickensians in the Big Apple are spoilt for choice as there are two branches of the Dickens Fellowship in the city. But why? And which one to choose? In the fearless pursuit of truth, the New York Times sent a reporter to visit the Christmas parties of both branches and published an article on the history of this phenomenon. Here it is ...
Mostly Musical Productions will be touring a musical version of Great Expectations in the UK in 2017. They are looking for support and involvement in various roles, for example publicity, social media marketing etc. Contact Teddy Hayes, Director/Producer 0208 581 7684
A full programme is arranged and brings together exciting new research into Dickens's afterlife and legacy, from his influence on social reform and literary criticism to biographies and reimaginings in the twentieth century and beyond.
For those interested in the history of Dickens’s Swiss Chalet, a gift from actor Charles Fechter in 1864, there is a recently republished booklet now available written by John Knott, Vice President of the Rochester and Chatham Dickens Fellowship (R&CDF). To obtain a copy and at the same time help the Restoration Fund, please send a cheque for £5.00 made out to “Rochester and Chatham Dickens Fellowship Restoration Fund” and your name and address to “The Chalet Book” 67, Harptree Drive, CHATHAM. Kent. ME5 0IH.
An MA course in Dickens Studies begins in October 2016 and will be a partnership between the University of Buckingham and the Charles Dickens Museum. An open day will be held between 12 – 2 p.m. at the Charles Dickens Museum on Saturday 2nd July. For further information, please see the link below.
The Dickens Fellowship is supporting the Charles Dickens Museum at 48 Doughty Street in opposing a planning application to undertake major structural work, including digging a new basement, on the adjoining building – No 47.
Newspaper coverage of the story in the Times and The Daily Telegraph is attached.
The opportunity to visit Gad’s Hill Place in Kent, the only home that Dickens actually owned, is being offered again at weekends in 2016. For further details of dates and how to book, please see the attached flyer.
Journal•Lists is a new educational service that allows users to sign up to receive by email instalments of historical diaries, letters, periodicals and novels on the days they were originally written or serialised - the next title is going to be Dickens’ Hard Times from the 1st of April as in the original 1854 publication.
The edition of The Sunday Telegraph for 6 March reported on the discovery of a letter Dickens wrote in February 1860 to aspiring writer Florence Marryat. The letter is described as ‘rude’! The article is attached below. Rude or simply honest? Make your own mind up.
David Chandler is very interested in the musical theatre versions of Dickens’s stories. Late in 2014 he helped set up a charitable organisation to make recordings of important British operas from the past: http://www.retrospectopera.org.uk/ . One of the aims is to make a recording of the delightful Solomon / Burnand “Pickwick” of 1889. There may even be a live performance or 2 in London too. About £10,000 to make it happen. There is a supporters’ scheme with various categories for those who would like to help:
The Dickens Fellowship very much regrets to record that Barbara Hardy died on Friday 12th February, having suffered a severe stroke on Tuesday 9th. She was 91 years old. Barbara’s contribution to scholarship, particularly about the novel in the 19th and 20th centuries, was inestimable. Many members of the Fellowship will have been inspired by her teaching, her writing and her talks. She will be buried at Llanmadoc church on Gower in South Wales on Saturday 20th February and a wake will take place at Flat G, 88 Philbeach Gdns SW59EU on Sunday 21st from midday.
Holly Furneaux, Professor of English Literature at Cardiff University, was literary advisor to the BBCs 20 part series Dickensian. In the attached article she considers what Dickens and his contemporaries would have made of it.
There will again be opportunities to visit Gad’s Hill Place on selected Saturday afternoons in 2016. For further details of dates and costs please access the link below. The majority of the guides will be members of the Rochester and Chatham Dickens Fellowship.