I love visiting the smaller historic places in London, the places that bring people alive and that tell a story. There are many houses in London that have been saved and turned in to museums because of the people that had been living there. The Charles Dickens Museum London is one of them. Half way down Doughty street London not far from Holborn stands the Georgian town house where Charles spent most of his life, the Dickens House Museum.
The Charles Dickens Museum is a historic house museum located at 48 Doughty Street in London, England. It was the home of the famous Victorian author Charles Dickens from 1837 to 1839, and is where he wrote some of his most famous works, including Oliver Twist and Nicholas Nickleby.
The museum features a collection of items related to Dickens’ life and work, including manuscripts, personal possessions, and rare editions of his books. Visitors can tour the rooms where Dickens lived and worked, including his study and bedroom, and learn about his family and social life during the time he lived in the house.
The Charles Dickens Museum is a popular destination for literary enthusiasts and anyone interested in the history of Victorian England. It provides a unique opportunity to step back in time and experience the world of one of the greatest writers of the English language.
“There are books of which the backs and covers are by far the best parts.”Charles Dickens
Everything you need to know about visiting the Charles Dickens Museum in London
Whats inside the Charles Dickens Museum?
You will arrives at the entrance to Charles Dickens house museum with black and white tiled floor and it teal door ready to explore. You will enter the museum via the house next door, make a note to look next door at the original entrance.
The house had been restored and in every room it shows the stories of Charles dickens life.
Dickens and his wife moved into 48 doughty street in 1837, where they brought up the first three of their ten children.
You will be given a guide book on entrance which you must return on exit. This tells you everything you need to know about Charles residence at Doughty street.
Exploring the Hallway
You first enter in to the hall where you will see some of the everyday articles Charles carried in his pockets back in the day. Charles was an avid theatre goer you will see his plastic theatre ticket a chain link coin purse his bag and his matchstick holder.
It’s a real treasure trove of Charles life with original articles and pieces of furniture. Snippets of his life and his character emerge all of the artifacts.
Around the house and you will learn a lot about his inspiration for some of his stories.
Charles Dickens Study and desk and chair
You will visit every room of his house including the study where Charles wrote Oliver Twist, Pickwick papers and Nicholas Nickleby.
Charles original desk stands pride of place in the study along with many of his books. To think that this was where Charles dreamed up his wonderful stories fills you with inspiration.
This is the desk and chair at which Dickens wrote many of his later works, including A Tale of Two Cities, Great Expectations and Our Mutual Friend.
The chair once stood in the bay window of the study at his final home at Gad’s Hill Place. From here Charles could overlook the front lawn with its sweeping drive. The chair was purchased by the Museum in 2015 with support from the National Heritage Memorial Fund and the Dickens Fellowship.
The unfinshed painting Dickens’s Dream by RW Buss (1875)
The unfinished picture in the study “Dickens dream” depicts this perfectly. Each character popping up floating around Charles mind, dickens work desk is even in the painting.
Next visit the dining room and where Charles entertained his guests.
In the Morning Room
In the morning room you will see the marriage certificate of Charlotte and Charles and even the beautiful engagement ring set with seven pieces of turquoise. It is thought that Dickens may have been referring to this in the book David Copperfield. ( a pretty little toy with blue stones)
The Charles dickens house kitchen
Later you will visit the typical Victorian kitchen the scullery and wash house. You will even see Dickens cellar, where he kept his very rare Madeira wines.
The Charles Dickens Nursery
The nursery shows a darker side Charles life and reflects his traumatic childhood in the workhouse. A prison grille and other objects marks the effect that it had on Charles writing. The prison bars were part of the Marshalsea Prison in South London. Dickens’s father was imprisoned for debt at the Marshalsea in 1824. At 12 years of age, Dickens had to leave school and work in a boot blacking factory to support his family. The prison is on loan from the Cuming Museum in Southwark.
The below miniature shows Charles at the age of 18. It is one of the earliest known portraits of the author.
Previous exhibitions at the museum
For a short time you could see the actresses dress from the BBC production of Great Expectations. Miss Havishams dress is made from pure silk taffeta and tulle and embellished with handmade silk bobbin lace.
At the moment the museum is showing an exhibition on the ladybird book of Charles dickens. It shows the amazing illustrations that made the book.
Where is Charles dickens Buried?
Dickens wished to be buried in a simple grave in the cemetery of Rochester Cathedral in Kent where he was living at the time. But when he died in 1870, he was buried in Poets’ the Corner of Westminster Abbey Cathedral
The Charles Dickens House opening times, price and address
The Charles Dickens Museum London is Open Wednesday to Sunday 10am- 5pm. The last entry is a 4pm. It is the perfect place to visit with a few hours to spare. It is only a 10 minute walk from Holborn station making it easily accessible.
These are the prices to attend the museum:
- Adult: £12.50
- Concessions (Students, Seniors and Disabled Visitors): £10.50
- Child 6-16 years: £7.50
- Children under 6 years: Free
Address : 48 – 49 Doughty Street London, WC1N 2LX Telephone: 020 7405 2127
Does the Charles Dickens Museum have a cafe?
There is even a beautiful tearoom to visit on your stay, serving sandwiches and cakes. Guests are free to visit the cafe at any time, and museum admission is not required to enjoy the cafe. The cafe is situated in the court yard and Free Wifi is available for all cafe customers.
The Charles Dickens Museum at Christmas
Look out for events at Charles Dickens Museum at Christmas time where they decorate the house and do evening tours.
I hope you enjoyed your look around The Charles Dickens Museum London.
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Charles Dickens Museum London.