literaryfestival2017

Footprints of London LitFest wordcloud

While London’s streets may not be paved with gold, there is a wealth of literary history round practically every corner.

Throughout October 2017 we will be again be staging Literary Footprints, our fourth running of our annual literary walks festival.

Literary Footprints is a unique and London-centric literary festival; like a walking book club, it takes people out onto the streets of London on guided walks researched, written and led by our experienced, professional guides.

You will get to see to where the novels and poems are set, where the authors’ inspiration was born and the avenues and alleyways, buildings and gardens their characters inhabit – places you might normally visit only in your imagination.

New walks for 2017 include Prufock & T S Eliot, Conrad’s The Secret Agent, Alexander Pope’s Dunciad, following Doctor Who in the classic episode Invasion, a celebration of Rumpole and the legal life, and a walk that follow’s the Bradshaw guide to Westminster and the City.

There will also be some of our favourite walks from previous years – walking the route Mrs Dalloway takes to buy flowers for her party, Tracing the Tudors in the real London of Wolf Hall, walks around Shakespeare’s London, Literary St Pancras, Sherlock Holmes walks and of course explore Charles Dickens London After Dark

Walks cost £12 each (£9 concessions) or you can buy a great value season ticket for £49 which will get you access to all the walks in the full Literary Footprints Festival 2017 programme listed below.

And as Virginia Woolf’s Mrs Dalloway said:

“I love walking in London,” said Mrs. Dalloway. “Really it’s better than walking in the country.”

We couldn’t agree more…

The full schedule is below, we look forward to meeting you on the walks!

 

ts eliot walkers

Tina’s T S Eliot walk  at St Dunstan in the East

 

Walks in October 2017

Literary Footprints Festival Season Ticket

Sun, 1 Oct

Description: Purchase of a Literary Footprints Festival festival season ticket entitles you to book a place FREE OF CHARGE on any of nearly 40 Literary Footprints walks between 1st October and 31st October 2017

Doctor Who: Invasions of London

Sun, 1 Oct

Your guide: Robin Rowles
Description: Exploring Classic and New Doctor Who locations set in the City of London!

Clerkenwell's Literary connections

Sun, 1 Oct

Your guide: Sean Patterson
Description: Explore Smithfield and Clerkenwell’s literary connections and hear readings from authors who wrote about this fascinating area.

 Literary Covent Garden. Towards A New Sensibility

Mon, 2 Oct

Your guide: Sean Patterson
Description: This walk uses the plays, novels, letters and diary entries of Covent Garden luminaries from The Restoration to The Napoleonic Wars to examine a new kind of urban thinking. We hear extracts from Fielding, John Gay, Jane Austen, Charles Lamb, John Evelyn, Samuel Pepys.

A Dickens of a City

Tue, 3 Oct

Your guide: David Charnick
Description: Explore the London of Charles Dickens, a city in transition. You are accompanied by readings from his novels – the authentic voice of London.

Much Ado About Trading

Wed, 4 Oct

Your guide: David Charnick
Description: This tour explores aspects of trade in Shakespeare’s London and how it provided valuable material to him and to his fellow dramatists

Mrs Dalloway's Day

Thu, 5 Oct

Your guide: Rob Smith
Description: This walk follows the route Clarissa Dalloway takes on her journey to buy flowers for her evening party in Virginia Woolf’s classic London novel

Made in Chelsea

Thu, 5 Oct

Your guide: Stephen Benton
Description: Hear about Artists and Writers, people like Ellen Terry, Oscar Wilde, Bram Stoker and Mark Twain

Banned Books

Thu, 5 Oct

Your guide: Rob Smith
Description: A walk looking at books that were deemed unfit for Londoners to read – from political tracts to 18th century pornography. The walk looks at why they were banned and what the consequences for London were.

T S Eliot - The Waste Land in the City

Fri, 6 Oct

Your guide: Tina Baxter
Description: A famous poem, a famous City. Explore its streets by reference to The Waste Land a poem written by T S Eliot, using streets and buildings. Poetry reading in atmospheric locations.

Booklovers' St James's

Sat, 7 Oct

Your guide: Anthony Davis
Description: Literary highlights of St James’s from Samuel Pepys’s wig to Charles Dickens’s beard, Nell Gwyn’s oranges and Oscar Wilde’s cigarette, stories of bibliomaniacs, writers, booksellers and publishers. See buildings they lived in and places they knew. And even some old books from buildings we see!

Doctor Who: Invasions of London

Sun, 8 Oct

Your guide: Robin Rowles
Description: Exploring Classic and New Doctor Who locations set in the City of London!

Conrad's The Secret Agent

Sun, 8 Oct

Your guide: Oonagh Gay
Description: Learn about the real characters behind Conrad’s portraits of anarchists and police spies in Victorian London

Bethnal Green in So Many Words

Mon, 9 Oct

Your guide: David Charnick
Description: With readings from Iain Sinclair, George Orwell and others, this tour explores the rich story of Bethnal Green, one of crime and poverty, but also one of resilience and survival. Through their words we engage with the human currents of Bethnal Green and its unique flavour.

Rumpole and the Legal Life

Tue, 10 Oct

Your guide: David Charnick
Description: Follow the legal adventures of Old Bailey hack Horace Rumpole with readings from John Mortimer’s stories.

Dickens After Dark:  In the Steps of the Night Walker

Tue, 10 Oct

Your guide: Mark Rowland
Description: Dickens said “But the streets of London, to be beheld in the very height of their glory, should be seen on a dark, dull, murky winter’s night…” Join me along the paths of his epic night walks to hear how his observations of the slumbering city inspired his legendary themes and characters.

The Nether World: George Gissing's Clerkenwell

Wed, 11 Oct

Your guide: Jen Pedler
Description: Recapture the atmosphere of slum life in 1880s Clerkenwell by following in the footsteps of the characters vividly portrayed in George Gissing’s rather bleak novel The Nether World.

Publish & Be Damned: A Fleet Street History

Wed, 11 Oct

Your guide: Andrea Vail
Description: Let’s take a walk down Fleet Street to hear about the monks, knights, and lawyers who made this area their home in the middle ages, the rise of mass market book publishing, and how Fleet Street went from having the City’s first printing press to becoming a 24-hour news operation.

Circles, Squares and Triangles - Virginia Woolf in Bloomsbury

Thu, 12 Oct

Your guide: Stephen Benton
Description: A walk through the Bloomsbury of Virginia Woolf

London Destroyed

Thu, 12 Oct

Your guide: Rob Smith
Description: This walk looks at the London locations that have featured in dystopian and post apocalyptic fiction.

Shakespeare in the City

Fri, 13 Oct

Your guide: David Brown
Description: Act 3 – Follow Shakespeare and his King’s Men acting company as they transfer across the river to the wealthy City.

Shakespeare & Co in Clerkenwell

Fri, 13 Oct

Your guide: Neil Sinclair
Description: Tales of Shakespeare and his contemparies including visiting the site of the Fortune Theatre, hear about the Dark Lady and the brothels of Clerkenwell and end on Clerkenwell Green

Tracing the Tudors: The real London of Wolf Hall

Sat, 14 Oct

Your guide: Mark Rowland
Description: Wolf Hall brought to life the personal and political machinations of this most turbulent period, but the Great Fire rendered physical traces of the Tudor age hard to find in today’s London. Unless, that is, you know where to look… Join me to discover the places that tell the stories behind the stories of Wolf Hall.

 Conrad's The Secret Agent

Sat, 14 Oct

Your guide: Oonagh Gay
Description: Learn about the real characters behind Conrad’s portraits of anarchists and police spies in Victorian London

Literary Soho

Sun, 15 Oct

Your guide: Alan Fortune
Description: Explore the lives of famous literary figures, like William Blake, Fanny Burney, George Orwell, Dylan Thomas, William Blake, Paul Verlaine and Arthur Rimbaud.

 Constable's Hampstead

Sun, 15 Oct

Your guide: Marilyn Greene
Description: Discover where Constable lived, the houses and landscapes he painted, as well as his family tomb. This talk is illustrated with quotes from his letters about his art and feelings for Hampstead

I wish I'd said that

Mon, 16 Oct

Your guide: Stephen Cook
Description: A light hearted literary walk

Much Ado About Trading

Tue, 17 Oct

Your guide: David Charnick
Description: This tour explores aspects of trade in Shakespeare’s London and how it provided valuable material to him and to his fellow dramatists

A Dickens of a City

Wed, 18 Oct

Your guide: David Charnick
Description: Explore the London of Charles Dickens, a city in transition. You are accompanied by readings from his novels – the authentic voice of London.

A Journal of the Plague Year

Wed, 18 Oct

Your guide: Rob Smith
Description: The stories of the quack doctors, brave neighbours and doom-mongers who filled London in the plague year of 1665 in Defoe’s classic account

The City by the Book

Thu, 19 Oct

Your guide: Jill Finch
Description: Charlotte Bronte loved it, Alexander Pope hated it. Known mainly as a place for money making and trade, the narrow alleyways of the City also gave birth to writers and poets. It either charmed or repelled its visitors and it has featured in and inspired books and poetry over the centuries. Jill’s walk from St Paul’s to Cornhill is awash with literary landmarks that might just surprise you.

Walk Wilkie's Way

Thu, 19 Oct

Your guide: Jen Pedler
Description: Wilkie Collins led a life that was as sensational as his novels. This walk explores Marylebone where he was born and spent most of his life – places he lived and worked, the women he loved and his close friendship with Charles Dickens.

Dickens After Dark:  In the Steps of the Night Walker

Thu, 19 Oct

Your guide: Mark Rowland
Description: Dickens said “But the streets of London, to be beheld in the very height of their glory, should be seen on a dark, dull, murky winter’s night…” Join me along the paths of his epic night walks to hear how his observations of the slumbering city inspired his legendary themes and characters.

Made in Chelsea

Fri, 20 Oct

Your guide: Stephen Benton
Description: Hear about Artists and Writers, people like Ellen Terry, Oscar Wilde, Bram Stoker and Mark Twain

Publish & Be Damned: A Fleet Street History

Sat, 21 Oct

Your guide: Andrea Vail
Description: Let’s take a walk down Fleet Street to hear about the monks, knights, and lawyers who made this area their home in the middle ages, the rise of mass market book publishing, and how Fleet Street went from having the City’s first printing press to becoming a 24-hour news operation.

 Samuel Pepys' Diary

Sat, 21 Oct

Your guide: Elaine Wein
Description: Over 350 years ago Samuel Pepys wrote about London, his home, family and friends and about the plague and the great fire. This walk visits places known to Pepys and we will hear about the momentous events that shap d this unique social document.

1984 London

Sat, 21 Oct

Your guide: Steve Pratt
Description: Hear about the life of George Orwell, and explore the London he knew as expressed in his books – particularly 1984.

St. Pancras in Literature, Film and Drama

Sun, 22 Oct

Your guide: Alan Fortune
Description: Explore the St. Pancras lives of important figures like Mike Leigh, Mary Wollstonecraft, George Bernard Shaw, Thomas Hardy and Paul Robeson.

Books Made in Bloomsbury

Sun, 22 Oct

Your guide: Anthony Davis
Description: Meet Bloomsbury’s less known writers, printers and publishers and see some of their books: like the book collector who cast out a demon and another who argued that Shakespeare’s plays were written by Bacon; plus London’s first shopping centre and the site of a printing press just 100 years old.

Shakespeare - Take Him for All in All

Mon, 23 Oct

Your guide: David Charnick
Description: While Shakespeare is the stuff of legend, he was in so many ways a typical Londoner. In fact, to explore the story of Shakespeare in London is to appreciate an exciting time of social advancement and international development, with London at the centre of England’s coming of age.

Shardlake's London

Tue, 24 Oct

Your guide: Jill Finch
Description: Follow the footsteps of the characters in C J Sansom’s ‘Shardlake’ novels set in 16th Century London at the time of the reformation.

Bethnal Green in So Many Words

Tue, 24 Oct

Your guide: David Charnick
Description: With readings from Iain Sinclair, George Orwell and others, this tour explores the rich story of Bethnal Green, one of crime and poverty, but also one of resilience and survival. Through their words we engage with the human currents of Bethnal Green and its unique flavour.

Literary Soho

Tue, 24 Oct

Your guide: Alan Fortune
Description: Explore the lives of famous literary figures, like William Blake, Fanny Burney, George Orwell, Dylan Thomas, William Blake, Paul Verlaine and Arthur Rimbaud.

Rumpole and the Legal Life

Wed, 25 Oct

Your guide: David Charnick
Description: Follow the legal adventures of Old Bailey hack Horace Rumpole with readings from John Mortimer’s stories.

Alexander Pope's The Dunciad

Wed, 25 Oct

Your guide: Rob Smith
Description: A walk visiting the locations mentioned in this satirical 18th century poem

Tracing the Tudors: The real London of Wolf Hall

Thu, 26 Oct

Your guide: Mark Rowland
Description: Wolf Hall brought to life the personal and political machinations of this most turbulent period, but the Great Fire rendered physical traces of the Tudor age hard to find in today’s London. Unless, that is, you know where to look… Join me to discover the places that tell the stories behind the stories of Wolf Hall.

Sherlock Holmes - the Return

Thu, 26 Oct

Your guide: Jen Pedler
Description: Explore the mews and backstreets of Marylebone following Sherlock Holmes and Dr Watson in The Adventure of the Empty House

Bradshaw's City

Fri, 27 Oct

Your guide: Jack Yeomanson
Description: A walk through the City of London using George Bradshaw’s 1862 guide to London. Featuring readings and looking at the differences between the tourism of the Victorians and the tourism of today.

Bradshaw's Westminster

Sat, 28 Oct

Your guide: Jack Yeomanson
Description: A walk through the City of Westminster using George Bradshaw’s 1862 guide to London. Featuring readings and looking at the differences between the tourism of the Victorians and the tourism of today.

Mayfair's Bright Young Things

Sat, 28 Oct

Your guide: Jen Pedler
Description: A literary romp round Mayfair; the playground of the Bright Young Things in the 1920s. Hear how writers including Michael Arlen, Anthony Powell and Evelyn Waugh portrayed the era.

1984 London

Sat, 28 Oct

Your guide: Steve Pratt
Description: Hear about the life of George Orwell, and explore the London he knew as expressed in his books – particularly 1984.

Circles, Squares and Triangles - Virginia Woolf in Bloomsbury

Sun, 29 Oct

Your guide: Stephen Benton
Description: A walk through the Bloomsbury of Virginia Woolf

T S Eliot - The Waste Land in the City

Sun, 29 Oct

Your guide: Tina Baxter
Description: A famous poem, a famous City. Explore its streets by reference to The Waste Land a poem written by T S Eliot, using streets and buildings. Poetry reading in atmospheric locations.

By Permission of Heaven

Mon, 30 Oct

Your guide: Jill Finch
Description: A walk based on Historian Adrian Tinniswood’s account of the Great Fire of London. Why did the City burn 350 years ago? Accident, treason, act of war? Or simply By Permission of Heaven? From St Paul’s to The Monument we’ll look at what happened on those fateful five days in September 1666.

I wish I'd said that

Tue, 31 Oct

Your guide: Stephen Cook
Description: A light hearted literary walk

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