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Medway Archives Centre Newsletter

Submitted by Ruiha Smalley on 11 March 2020


A selection of news from the Medway Archives.

A time to celebrate Medway's rich heritage

This year we’re celebrating all things Charles Dickens and commemorate 150 years since the authors death. We have a number of fascinating events at the Archives that will keep Dickens enthusiasts enthralled, this is in addition to the unique and historically important Fitzgerald Collection that is held in the Archives.

Exhibition: Women Power

An exhibition celebrating group action, education and comradeship, featuring material held in our archives and with contributions from local Soroptimists, Women’s Institutes and Girl Guides. See how these organisations have shaped and enhanced the lives of local women and how they have helped to record life in Medway’s towns and villages in the last 100 years.

Runs until 19 May 2020. Free. No need to book.

Special Event: Women Power

Celebrating group action, education and comradeship in Medway and beyond. This event is linked to the Women Power exhibition and ties in with International Women’s Day. Additional materials will be available that provide a fascinating insight into the role of women and women's organisations. This event is made possible with the support of the Women's Institute, local Soroptimists and the Girl Guides.

Saturday 7 March. 11am - 3pm. Free. No need to book.

Exhibition: Dicken's friend Percy Fitzgerald

Percy Heatherington Fitzgerald was a close friend and biographer of Charles Dickens. He dedicated himself to collecting works by, and about Charles Dickens including personal items, autographed letters, contemporary memorabilia and vast array of other materials.

From 21 May until 31 July. Free. No need to book.

Exhibition: Portraits of Dickens

As part of the Medway-wide 150 year celebrations of all things Charles Dickens, this is a delightful exhibition of sketches and photographs of one of Medway's most famous residents. 

Runs from 21 May until 31 July. Free. No need to book.

Exhibition: Dickensland

Charles Dickens lived in both Chatham and Rochester and knew the Medway area very well. His knowledge of the area inspired much of his writings. This exhibition explores the parts of Chatham, Rochester and the surrounding areas that were to influence him.

Runs from 21 May until 31 July. Free. No need to book.

Talk: Charles Dickens and the Medway Towns Workhouses

Discover the reality behind the writing with this free talk by Deborah Collins. Dickens personal experience of debtors prison, child labour and harsh working conditions created a lasting impression and significantly influenced his writing. He believed that the poor were unfairly penalised by the system and this became the reason for his personal interest in social, economic and labour reform.

Wednesday 3 June. 2:30-3:30pm. Free. Booking essential, call 01634 332714 or email


Visit the website for more details -