Top 5 Activities to Celebrate Charles Dickens’ 200th Birthday

February 6, 2012 by

News & Alerts, Things To Do, Travel Tips

Charles Dickens had a vivid imagination.

Charles Dickens had a vivid imagination. 'Dickens' Dream' by Robert William Buss,

Whether we know it or not, we’ve all grown up on the writings of Charles Dickens, one of London’s most famous chroniclers. He wrote The Christmas Carol, inventing Scrooge and the ghosts of Christmas past, present and yet to come. He wrote Great Expectations and Bleak House – who hasn’t watched those on film or TV?

In fact, Dickens was the serial drama writer of his day with chapters of his novels being published weekly in the newspaper and people literally waiting on the docks of New York for ships to bring the latest newspapers from England with the next installment of the story. If he were alive today, he would probably have written The Sopranos. If he were alive today he would turn 200 on February 7th 2012. If you’re traveling to England early this year it will be hard to miss the fact of Dicken’s birthday. He is one of England’s favorite sons and there will be exhibitions, film screenings, talks, walks and festivals galore. Some of the best will be:

1. Charles Dickens: Life and Legacy at the National Portrait Gallery until 22 April. The exhibition of portraits focuses particularly on his American tours.
2. Dickens on Screen at the BFI Southbank which is a three-month screening of all the adaptations of his books to screen, both tv and film.
3. Dickens and London at the Museum of London until June 10th. It’s advisable to book tickets ahead for this one.
4. Portsmouth the town where Dickens was born will have many different celebrations and exhibitions throughout the year especially centered around the Charles Dickens Birthplace Museum.
5. Walking tours of London the city Dickens describes so vividly in his stories. Read his books to really get to know London and her characters.

Check all the events happening here.

My favorite would have to be the Dickens Half Marathon in Houston, Texas. Who said Dickens was only beloved in England?

Philippa Burne

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