Dickens Bicentennial – Simon Callow

Went to a performance by Simon Callow at Bishops Stortford College this evening all about the life of Charles Dickens – something he is taking around the country to support his book about Dickens life. The way he told the story took Dicken's childhood job in a blacking factory as the secret spring to his life – creating a drive that finally killed him. The bicentennial of his birth is on Tuesday Feb 7th.

Having discovered that Dickens commuted from Camden (where I work) to Embankment to work in the factory on starvation rations of a shilling a week. I dug out the film below of locations in the vicinity of Camden linked to his life. 16 Bayham street is 5 minutes walk from our office. I've made a mental note to reread Pickwick papers.  I studied Dickens at university but rather went off the grand storylines and the tendency to mawkishness – I always enjoyed Pickwick papers so will give him another go. His range and characterisation was astounding but he also carried a load of sentiment with him too less to my taste.

Drove home in a blizzard – shades of Lady Dedlock walking to London..

 

 

 

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