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Charles Dickens fans protest against home development

Created: 13/06/2016

Fans of one of the world’s most famous writers, Charles Dickens, want to block plans that could see development work take place next to his former home in London.

The Charles Dickens Museum in Holborn, central London, is likely to be affected by building work that is proposed for the property next door. Employees at the museum fear that the building is at risk of damage and now admirers and fans from the Dickens Fellowship are documenting their pledges to have the planning permission overturned.

Information from the Camden New Journal outlined the designs for the listed five-bedroom home next door that include expanding the basement below the back garden. 

Speaking to the Telegraph, Dr Tony Williams, the Fellowship’s president, said that the plans for the rear of the neighbouring house “will strike members very closely since many of them individually and collectively as branches contributed sums to the improvement and maintenance of the garden space.”

The plan to extend the neighbouring property puts pressure on the museum to perform to its high standards, attracting visitors from across the world, including New Zealand, Japan and North America.

Museum volunteer John Gardener told the Camden New Journal: "This is a living room where the Dickens family would spend time and the study where Dickens wrote Oliver Twist and Nicholas Nickleby and which would be relatively well lit especially in the mornings.

"These rooms are now becoming increasingly hemmed in by the proposed extension and a small part of the original character is further eroded."

The Charles Dickens Museum was established in 1925 after the property was saved from demolition. But now those not in favour of the developments fear that further excavation work could lead to structural damage to the museum, and Dickens’ last surviving London residence.

If you are looking to extend your property through a conservatory, patio or extension, or have had planning permission approved by your local council, professional handyman services in London are on hand for affordable advice and property updates.

Image Credit: Dickens Museum (Wikimedia Commons)

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