Tory Historian wrote some while ago about visiting Dickens Museum on a Boxing Day and about George Orwell's essay about the great writer. That led to a very interesting discussion. However, yesterday's London Evening Standard had an item about the museum, wondering why it will be shut for refurbishment for most of the year, which just happens to be one dedicated to Charles Dickens.
The counter-argument was worthy of consideration:
Dr Florian Schweitzer, director of the Charles Dickens Museum, apologised to those upset about the timing of the £3.2 million renovation. "In our opinion this is the best year to do it, because there will be many other Dickens exhibits available," he said. "When everything winds down we'll be back with more facilities and an even stronger offering." The refurbishment includes an expansion into the building next door to make the museum look more like it did when Dickens was alive.
Dr Schweitzer added that the museum would arrange pop-up collections around the country during the six months it is closed.Somehow pop-up collections do not seem entirely appropriate but the argument that this might be a good time to refurbish the museum has some merit.
Tory Historian could not forebear from laughing at the following, though:
A spokeswoman for the Dickens Fellowship said: "It seems ridiculous that so many people will be coming to London for the Olympics but that they won't be able to enjoy one of the world's most important centres for Dickens lovers."The idea that people who will be coming for the Olympics are likely to spend time searching for Charles Dickens's one remaining London home and the exhibitions in it is too funny for words.