The Dandy Chargers
In 1817 Baron Karl von Drais created the Lauf-maschine (running machine) / Draisienne / Mechanical Horse, the first human powered land vehicle to mount a serious bid for public acceptance. Satirically named the Dandy Charger.
Then in 1818 Dennis Johnson, a coachmaker, of London developed an improved model that he called the Pedestrian Curricle / Hobby Horse / Velocipede / Dandy Horse / Accelerator / Swift Walker. Both of these contraptions were wooden, with two wheels that were pushed along with the feet. The activity of riding was not confined just to gentlemen as a model for the ladies was also said to be available.
The Dandy Chargers at the Jane Austen Festival.
This group made their first appearance at the Jane Austen Festival in 2009, the year of the world record ‘Regency Dress’ bid. They made quite a stir with their brightly coloured vehicles and costumes. They were a hit with the crowd and put on a demonstration ride as part of the Grand Promenade around the streets of Bath.
Take a look at this lovely little video of part of the ride of the Dandy Chargers during the Festival
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Elle Interviews Adrian Lukis
On a lovely sunny day, we were making the new Jane Austen Centre film with Adrian when during a break we took the opportunity to grab a few minutes to interview the ex Mr. Wickham.
You will see for yourself that Adrian is such a charming gentleman.
“I love playing cads. They’re more interesting and so many of them seem to have a special kind of power and aura about them.”
Adrian Lukis ought to know. With his dark good looks and easy charm, he has often been cast in the role of attractive rogue or upper-class bounder. “He has charm in spades,” wrote Dominic Cavendish in the Daily Telegraph in a 2000 review of Lukis’s performance of Beach Wedding at the Nuffield Theatre in Southampton.
Adrian Lukis, born in 28th March 1957 in Birmingham, is an actor who has appeared regularly in British television drama since the late 1980s. He trained at Drama Studio London. His most recent notable appearances have been as Sergeant Douglas ‘Doug’ Wright in the Police drama series The Bill, and as Marc Thompson in the BBC legal drama Judge John Deed.
He was a regular, playing Dr David Shearer, in Peak Practice between 1997-99. He also played Mr. George Wickham in the BBC’s 1995 adaption of Jane Austen’s Pride and Prejudice.
Adrian had appeared in the ITV1 one-off drama Back Home and in the BBC rural drama series Down to Earth.
He had previously appeared in The Casebook of Sherlock Holmes (as Bennett in The Creeping Man), Maigret, Miss Marple and Prime Suspect. Adrian Lukis played Simon Avery in Silent Witness Series 15 Episode 2, Death Has No Dominion.
He is currently appearing as Carter in Bull at the Crucible Theatre in Sheffield.
Lukis is descended from the Channel Islands archaeologist Frederick Lukis.
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Martin Salter Meeter Greeter Martin Salter, the meeter and greeter at The Jane Austen Centre in Bath and officially recognised as ‘England’s Most Photographed Man’, celebrated his fiftieth birthday in style at the weekend. The celebrations included a surprise carriage ride around the city, organised by the Jane Austen Centre and provided courtesy of Courtyard Carriages, who arrived replete with a bottle of champagne. Martin was then whisked away for a twenty-five minute trip around Bath, passing many of the landmarks and buildings connected with Jane Austen and her time in Bath, as well as numerous visitors and residents alike who waved him on his way. Tracy from Courtyard Carriages said: “When we were contacted by the Jane Austen Centre about this surprise for Martin we immediately said yes. It was an honour to do this for him, as he is always doing so much for the city and its community.” Martin can be seen outside the Jane Austen Centre in Gay Street Bath, every day throughout the year. Come and say hello and have your photograph taken with him. (more…)
View the 2013 Jane Austen Festival images now!
Official Festival photographer Owen Benson has now uploaded all the images he took of this year’s 2013 Jane Austen Festival for everyone to view. There are some stunning shots for you to enjoy.
Owen attended over 30 events at the 2013 Jane Austen Festival and if you were here in Bath you are very likely to appear in one of his sets.
The 2013 Jane Austen Festival was the biggest yet however every year the Festival grows in size reflecting the increased interest in Jane Austen, the Regency period, food,manner, literature, costume and having fun.
If you would like to get involved with the Festival next year make sure you are on the Festival Mailing list where we send out details of events and tickets.
The first Jane Austen Festival in Bath was held in September 2001 over the course of a weekend with events taking place at the Jane Austen Centre in Gay Street.
The first Promenade set out from the Jane Austen Centre in 2004 and had 30 people including most of the staff taking part. In 2009 the promenade had over 450, all in costume with drummers, dancers, military and naval men. All ages, male and female had the most wonderful time in fantastic weather.
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The Regency Tea Room at the Jane Austen Centre earns the 2013 Trip Advisor Certificate of Excellence. Honoured as a Top Performing Tearoom as Reviewed by Travellers on the World’s Largest Travel Site Bath, Uk – The Regency Tea Room at the Jane Austen Centre today announced that it has received a TripAdvisor® Certificate of Excellence award. The accolade, which honours hospitality excellence, is given only to establishments that consistently achieve outstanding traveller reviews on TripAdvisor, and is extended to qualifying businesses worldwide. Only the top-performing 10 per cent of businesses listed on TripAdvisor receive this prestigious award. To qualify for a Certificate of Excellence, businesses must maintain an overall rating of four or higher, out of a possible five, as reviewed by travellers on TripAdvisor, and must have been listed on TripAdvisor for at least 12 months. Additional criteria include the volume of reviews received within the last 12 months. Lenka Winter, the Tea Room Manager is pleased to receive a TripAdvisor Certificate of Excellence,” said,“We strive to offer our customers a memorable experience, and this accolade is evidence that our hard work is translating into positive reviews on TripAdvisor.” “TripAdvisor is delighted to celebrate the success of businesses around the globe, from Sydney to Chicago, Sao Paulo to Rome, which are consistently offering TripAdvisor travellers a great customer experience,” said Alison Copus, Vice President of Marketing for TripAdvisor for Business. “The Certificate of Excellence award provides top performing establishments around the world the recognition they deserve, based on (more…)
Our ‘Airport bus Video’ Take a look at this little 1 minute video we made to show on the Airport Bus which runs from Bath city Centre to Bristol airport and back again. Its a bit of fun and shows Martin and Centre Guide Elle as well as the Regency Tea Room. The Jane Austen Centre aims to be not only informative but exciting and illuminating. With knowledgeable staff, a lovely period atmosphere, exclusive film, costume, contemporary exhibits, maps and books. It is the perfect starting point to an exploration of Jane Austen’s Bath. The Centre at 40 Gay Street in Bath houses a permanent exhibition which tells the story of Jane’s experience in the city between 1801 and 1806 and the effect that living here had on her and her writing.Gay Street is the ideal location for the Jane Austen Centre in Bath, set between two of Bath’s architectural masterpieces, Queen Square and the Circus. Enjoying a taste of Georgian England Jane Austen actually lived in Gay Street (higher up the hill on the same side, at No.25) for some months in 1805. Celebrating Bath’s most famous resident. “They arrived in Bath. Catherine was all eager delight; her eyes were here, there, everywhere, as they approached its fine and striking environs, and afterwards drove through those streets which conducted them to the hotel. She was come to be happy, and she felt happy already. They were soon settled in comfortable lodgings in Pultney Street”. Northanger Abbey In Persuasion, (more…)
Festival Images 2012 Our professional photographer Owen Benson has loaded all of his fantastic images to an online site for you to enjoy. Just go into the galleries and look around. Image Galleries If you would like to download high resolution images to print yourself or if you would like to order prints this is now possible. Owen has kept the cost to an absolute minimum. Prices range from 50p per download to prints from £1. The download site is a little awkward but if you follow the instructions you will be able to get what you want. Go to the Image Galleries where you can view the shots from each of the events. If you would like to purchase a print just click the image and ‘Add to Cart’. You can then choose the size and finish of the print. Simple If you would like to download an image to print later or send to friends there is an extra step. 1 Choose your image and then press ‘Add to Cart’ 2 Press the ‘Downloads’ tab in the top right corner 3 Press the radio button 4 Press ‘Add to Cart’. When you checkout you will need to create an account in order to pay. I know you will enjoy these images. (more…)
Readathon event to celebrate Jane Austen’s bi-centenary The Jane Austen Centre in Bath is to host an event that will be broadcast around the world -a 12 Hour International Readathon. January 28th 2013 sees the 200th anniversary of the publication of Jane Austen’s Pride & Prejudice and to mark this bicentenary the book will be read in its entirety during a twelve hour period. The half- day long ‘Readathon’ will take place at the Centre in Gay Street and will be streamed to eager fans all around the world. The book, which regularly tops polls as the nation’s favourite novel, will be read in short 10 minute segments by up to 140 celebrities, authors, politicians, musicians, Olympians, school children, competition winners and personalities. The Centre will also be welcoming internet streams from the various overseas Jane Austen societies and celebrities. David Baldock, Director of the Jane Austen Centre said, “This is such an important literary milestone that it cannot be allowed to pass without recognition. I have witnessed how Jane Austen’s talent unites people from all corners of the world and this ‘Readathon’ is one way we can celebrate this together.” The Centre is still deciding who should get the honour of reading the opening line, which is probably the most famous in English Literature. ‘It is a truth universally acknowledged, that a single man in possession of a good fortune, must be in want of a wife’. All of the readers at the Centre will be offered the opportunity to (more…)