Tuesday, 7 February 2012

What the Dickens can you do to celebrate?!

Today is the 200th Birthday of Charles Dickens and there are lots of celebrations happening around London.  So, if you have the day off and free to explore the City, then walk yourself down to 48 Doughty Street, home to The Charles Dickens Museum.

The Museum will be open from 12pm until 5pm today and if you happen to be within the first 200 guests you will receive a free Birthday Cup cake.  There will be readings of Charles Dickens work throughout the Afternoon and hosts in Victorian dress.  You may even get to catch a glimpse of The Prince of Wales and The Duchess of Cornwall, as they will be visiting the museum in the morning.

BFI Southbank hosts the London leg of the Global Dickens Read-a-thon, 24 counties from Albania to Zimbabwe will be participating in a 24-hour reading marathon, beginning in Australia with a reading from ‘Dombey and Son’.

If you keep those ears pricked then you may hear The bells ringing out from Southwark Cathedral’s Bell tower.  At 5.30 there will be a commemorative Choral Evensong at the cathedral followed by a talk by Claire Tomalin, author of ‘Charles Dickens: A Life’.

If you are a lover of gadgets and Ap's then you can download Dark London which takes users on a journey through the darker side of Charles Dickens’ London.  What's more the first edition is Free!  So get your I phone out, the walking shoes and get into town.

If you don't have a free day, but still fancy celebrating Dickens Birthday then The Museum of London has many events going on until June 10th, so there is plenty of time.

If you happen to be in Shrewsbury then check yourself in to the Lion Hotel - where both Charles Dickens and Yours truly, once stayed.  NB : They didn't rename the room The Jenni Crane Suite when I left, slightly disappointing.

So, whatever the Dickens you are doing today or over the weekend makes sure that you too celebrate the bicentenary of one of Britain's greatest authors.

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