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Broadstairs annual Dickens Festival begins with a colourful parade

By Peter Barnett
Broadstairs Dickens Festival
Broadstairs Dickens Festival

Broadstairs time-travelled back to the days of Victorian England as celebrations heralded this week’s annual Dickens Festival.

The town was alive on Saturday (June 14) for the grand opening parade from Pierremont Park at the top of the High Street down to Victoria Gardens overlooking Viking Bay.

Many of the characters that inhabited the pages of Dickens’ most famous novels were on view, while ladies and gentlemen paraded in beautifully-designed period costumes.

The festival, launched in 1937 to mark the centenary of Dickens’ first visit, will continue with its traditionally busy programme until Friday, June 20.

It was started by Gladys Waterer who was resident at Dickens House in the 1930s. It was launched with a staging of David Copperfield, and publicised by people in Victorian dress around Broadstairs.

Apart from during the Second World War, the festival has been held annually in the third week of June ever since.

Festival programmes are widely available in Broadstairs shops and at the tourist information kiosk. Full details on the festival website: www.broadstairsdickensfestival.co.uk

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