Charles Dickens house renovated
LONDON - Reuters
Dicken’s brick row house has been restored to its early Victorian splendor. REUTERS PhotoThe former London home of Charles Dickens reopened on Dec 10, after an eight-month, $5 million refurbishment celebrating the author’s bicentenary.
Dickens lived at 48 Doughty Street in central London with his family between 1837 and 1839. There, in his mid-20s, he wrote “Oliver Twist” and “Nicholas Nickleby”, novels that made him a rising literary star.
The four-storey brick row house was restored to its early Victorian splendor to feel less like a museum and more atmospheric, museum director Florian Schweizer told Reuters.
“We wanted to recreate it like a home, so visitors could feel like they’re actually visiting Charles Dickens and that he might step back in at any time,” Schweizer said.
Inaugurated in 1925, the museum is the author’s only surviving London house. Its redesign, largely funded through the Heritage Lottery Fund, comes in the year marking the 200th anniversary of Dickens’s birth in Portsmouth, Hampshire, and opens the house’s kitchen and attic to the public for the first time.
Visitors are guided through the dimly lit home not by museum signage on the walls but painted silhouettes of a young Dickens, with long hair and no beard, challenging the mainstream image of “the older Dickens”, said Schweizer.