PLB : Dickensian christmas celebrations for PLB- Creative design and consultancy for cultural and natural heritage

Dickensian christmas celebrations for PLB

Charles Dickens’ only surviving London home has been brought to life and opens to the public in time for Christmas, following interpretive work carried out by PLB.

The Malton-based heritage and design consultancy has completed a contract as part of the £3.1million Great Expectations regeneration project to restore and enhance the Charles Dickens Museum. The project is a key element of the celebrations for Dickens’ bicentenary during 2012.


Charles Dickens Museum


PLB was appointed by the Charles Dickens Museum to undertake the interpretive design development to support a Round 2 Heritage Lottery Fund bid, awarded in December 2010. Working with the museum, trustees, conservation architects and access consultants, PLB developed an approach to interpreting the Grade 1 Listed building in a way that has increased physical and intellectual access within the house and recreated the interiors true to Dickens.

Says Jamie McCall from PLB, “No 48 Doughty Street played a significant role in English history in its influence on Dickens’ work. It was there that he began married and family life and wrote several of his most famous works, including Nicholas Nickleby and Oliver Twist. The building has been open to the public since 1925 as a museum of his life and work, containing furniture, paintings, personal items and an archive which reveals every facet of Dickens.

“Now, new displays return rooms to their Victorian appearance and help improve visitors’ understanding of Dickens and his works. Our interpretive design work aims to transport visitors to Victorian times and create an atmosphere which will make visitors truly feel as if Dickens has just left the building. Visitors find out about what influenced Dickens the author, and encounter Dickens the family man, whilst discovering what domestic life was like within a middle-class Victorian terrace.”

The project, supported by the Heritage Lottery Fund, has helped preserve and enhance the special atmosphere of the historic house as well as carry out important works to protect the structure of the building, improve access and provide a richer visitor experience. The neighbouring house has been linked to Dickens’ house and provides additional exhibition, learning and activity spaces as well as research facilities.

Posted 10th December 2012

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