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7 Sept 2023

The Diary Of A Nobody

This 90-minute walking tour shows you the inspiration behind the places and characters created by the brothers Grossmiths in their satirical diary of a middle class Victorian

You don't need to have already read the book to enjoy this walk, but I am pretty sure that you will be reading it after the tour!

I must have read this book more than ten times from front to back, and each time I have noticed something new, perhaps in the form of an amusing reference to a nearby place with a clever name-change, or hint at something that was topical or relevant back in the 1880s. It's clear that Mr Pooter's world wasn't really isn't that much different from today. Your socks can still go pink in the wash,  innovative new products are not quite as good as advertised, and your son is an embarrassment (though he thinks you are too)!
The prep for this walk was extensive but really enjoyable – I spent a lot of time re-reading passages in the book and cross-referencing the things mentioned with newspapers of the day. I was often to be found either absorbed in old postal directories or wandering up and down Holloway Road like some kind of private detective as I scribbled notes and hunted for the best locations to tie in with the Grossmiths' narrative. 
But it's all been worth it as I have always had lovely feedback from the people who have joined me for the walking tour. Many who, as I suspected, bought and/or re-read the book afterwards.
The walk visits places where Mr Pooter and his family and friends might have lived,visited and shopped (had they been real). Along the way I point out buildings and references whilst reading some relevant amusing passages from the book. It's a pun-tastic delight, even though I do say this myself!

For literary fans – you might also like my Lyrics and Limericks, Fantasy and Fraud walk which takes us through Holloway showcasing the diverse range of poets, playwrights, diarists and lyricists who have lived and worked in the Holloway area. 

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