Dickensian Christmas at Chatsworth

The Spirits of Christmas Past, Present and Future will visit Chatsworth this year as the festive season is given a Victorian gothic twist with Oh Dickens! It’s Christmas, a celebration of Charles Dickens’ best loved works.

Actors playing Fagin and Miss Havisham and others from Dickens’ rich cast of characters will bring the theme to life, along with room guides in period costume, as they roam around in the fog and gaslight of Chatsworth’s grand rooms.

Visitors of all ages can join in the fun by choosing from dozens of character costumes made by Chatsworth’s textile team and ready to try.

Rooms throughout the house feature period sets that evoke both the splendour and squalor of Dickensian London. As well as the London docks and Victorian shop fronts, specific scenes from the books, such as Scrooge’s bed, have been recreated in detail.

This enchanting interpretation of Dickens’ novels will feature large-scale illustrations, wall murals, sound and light effects, projections and props. Artists such as the paper sculptor Su Blackwell are working with Chatsworth to help recreate the Christmas spirit that Dickens sought to highlight.

Displays will also include related items from Chatsworth’s own collections, such as letters from Dickens himself to the 6th Duke of Devonshire; first editions of books including Little Dorrit and A Tale of Two Cities; and letters from Duchess Georgiana to her mother from Paris during the uprising referenced in A Tale of Two Cities.

The exhibition is on until January 7. For more details go to http://www.chatsworthhouse.org

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