Dickens through the lens

When Charles Dickens was born, there were no such thing as photographs. By the time he became a young man and moved into the house that has now become the Dickens Museum however, ways of recording what people looked like had changed dramatically. For the very first time, ‘real life’ could be captured and sent all over the world, allowing people to see celebrities ‘in the flesh’, fleeting moments caught for ever, and the dead brought back to life.
In this session, we will examine a number of images of Dickens, and discover how even nearly 200 years ago, people were already keen to manipulate and control images to convey certain messages. We will also have a chance to see some of the photographs which have now been ‘colourised’ as part of our exhibition, ‘Technicolour Dickens’, which will let us see Dickens brought to life in a way that he has never been before. 

Colourised photograph of Charles Dickens at reading desk

Charles Dickens posed as if performing reading. Digital image by Oliver Clyde, 2020. Original image by (George) Herbert Watkins, collodion print, 1858.
 © Charles Dickens Museum / Oliver Clyde 
Optional Extras
Informative and highly entertaining Dickens walk with expert Richard Jones; exploring London through Dickens’s eyes.
For more information click here.
Curriculum Links:
KS2: History
  • a study of an aspect or theme in British history that extends pupils’ chronological knowledge beyond 1066 (Victorian Britain)
  • a study of an aspect of history or a site dating from a period beyond 1066 that is significant in the locality.
  • the lives of significant individuals in the past who have contributed to national and international achievements, some should be used to compare aspects of life in different periods
  • events beyond living memory that are significant nationally or globally 
Onsite – 2 hours. All workshops are integrated into interactive guided tours of the historic house.
  • Up to 10 students, Off-peak £100 (Jan-Oct), Peak £125 (Nov-Dec)
  • Up to 20 students, Off-peak £150 (Jan-Oct), Peak £185 (Nov-Dec)
  • Up to 30 students, Off-peak £200 (Jan-Oct), Peak £250 (Nov-Dec)

1 hour, one class, £50 + £30 for each additional class (UK)
1 hour, one homeschool household, £30 + £10 for each additional household (UK)
1 hour, one international class, £70 inclusive of VAT and international payment fee (overseas) 



Booking forms and enquiries should be sent to: education@dickensmuseum.com

Download onsite education visit booking form
Download onsite education visit terms and conditions
Download onsite education visit visual story for schools
Download online education session booking form
Download online education session terms and conditions

We can accommodate a maximum of 30 students per booking slot. We have the capacity to run two half day sessions onsite each day from 10:00 – 12:00 and 13:00-15:00. Please note that for the safety of your group we require a minimum adult-to-student ratio of 1:10 for each onsite booking.

Online sessions can be booked at times to suit you subject to availability.
Please be advised that full payment is required in order to confirm your booking.
Amendments and cancellations must be made at least 21 days prior to your visit, after which no refund will be available.

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