Bath part 2 – More promenading, embroidery and… Mr Wickham!!

Day two of the festival actually started off in rather a similar manner as the day before, with another promenade! This was a “mini promenade” and it was the first time, to my knowledge at least, that they’ve had this. It wasn’t nearly as big or as exciting as the big promenade the day before, but then it wasย called a ‘mini’ one, so I guess that was to be expected. But that said I still had a lovely time walking around chatting with people, admiring beautiful houses and gorgeous costumes. I have also come to the conclusion that living somewhere at the end of Great Pultney Street, somewhere in between nr. 36 and nr. 4 Sydney Place (just around the corner from there, perhaps 50 meters away) in 1802 would have been amazing! On one side your neighbor would have been William Willberforce, who lived in Bath at the time, and on the other would have been Jane Austen!! Just imagine bumping in to either of them when going out for a morning walk!

Aylwen, me, Isable and Jeanette outside Jane Austen’s house at nr 4 Sydney Place

I think these ladies look so lovely in their beautiful colorful bonnets

Love the mix of different eras!

Jeanette and Aylwen, both looking for things in their reticules by the looks of itย 

The Holborne Museum, where our promenade ended

One of the gentlemen on the promenade came up to us and showed us this first edition copy of Pride and Prejudice which he had found in an antique shop for ยฃ12!!! I want to make a find like that too!!ย 

The promenade over and a quick lunch too it was time for the next thing on our schedule for the day, an embroidery workshop. Now I haven’t done an awful lot of embroidering, no more than necessary, I don’t exactly mind it but I haven’t been a huge fan either. But I really, really enjoyed this workshop! We were first shown some slides of different designs and quotes relating to embroidery in Jane Austen’s novels (there were more than I’ve realized) and then we all got a lovely little set each with a piece of white cotton fabric, threads in all the colors of the rainbow to choose from, an embroidering hoop and papers with designs and instructions. And then we all got started.

I wouldn’t say I learnt a great deal, I knew the basics already but loved getting the designs and ideas, but what I really liked about this event was sitting there in a big room together with lots of other ladies (and one gentleman!) chatting, sewing, drinking tea and having cake. It was just such a lovely thing to do! Makes me wish there were people around where I live whom I could do things like this with now and then! Sadly I know of no one in the area… ๐Ÿ™

Happily stitching away (all these embroidery pictures I’ve borrowed from Jeanette. So thanks to her for them!)

Me, Isabel and Tegan all focusing hard on the task before us

Tea and cakes just made the event even more fun!

So, you all know who Adrian Lukis is? He’s an actor, not the most famous one but in our circles very well known as the part he played in BBC’s 1995 version of Pride & Prejudice where he was Mr Wickham. He was honoring Bath with a visit this day. Together with the actress Caroline Langrishe he was doing a reading of many of the famous dialogues from Jane Austen’s books, such as Mr Darcy’s proposal (the first one), Mr Tilney and Catherine Morland dancing and so on.

So, that’s what me and many of my friends were going to that evening. The event was held in the Assembly Rooms, and before going there me, Jeanette and Aylwen (two of the ladies I was staying together with) made a quick dash for Sainsbury’s to get something for dinner. We didn’t have time to eat it anywhere else so sat down on a bench right outside the door of the Assembly Rooms, and who should come and walk past us as we were sitting there in our costumes and with our bright orange Sainsbury’s bags but Mr Wickham himself! He gave us a slight bow as he walked past! Am I allowed to be just a little bit excited over that fact? ๐Ÿ˜›

The actual reading was very enjoyable. It is always fun to hear Jane Austen’s words, every single time I’m reminded of what a genious she was in her writing! And I think they did it well, doing the different characters. Of course it was extra special when they did the scene where Mr Wickham tells Elizabeth of his “misfortunes”. He may have aged a little (but considering the movies were made 17 years ago I still think he looks very similar to back then!) but he still sounds exactly like Wickham!

!!!!! ๐Ÿ˜€

When the readings were all done Adrian stayed on and ‘mingled’ with the audience. So everyone got the chance to talk to him, get an autograph or have their picture taken with him. He seems to be a nice guy, was open and friendly and joking with everyone. And I do think he enjoyed all the female attention he was getting… Because he sure got quite a bit of it! Everyone was swarming around him, I bet that doesn’t happen to him every day!

Enjoying the female attention… ๐Ÿ˜‰

Me and Mr Wickham!ย 

It was in a way slightly surreal to meet him. Not because he is a celebrity (he isn’t really) but because I’m just so familiar with him from P&P, and to see him face to face was strange, but fun too!

I heard a rumor circling amongst some people that they have heard a rumor (so as you can already tell this is far from being a fact! Yet…. ๐Ÿ˜› ) that next year they’re going to try to bring Colin Firth to the festival. Seeing as it is the 200 years anniversary of the publication of Pride and Prejudice and everything. If I’m honest I don’t think he’ll come, but hey, if he does that would be brilliant!

I guess we’ll just have to wait and see. And meanwhile I’ve got several more posts to do here, so stay tuned!

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15 Responses to Bath part 2 – More promenading, embroidery and… Mr Wickham!!

  1. Annie says:

    I do hope we get to see the finished embroidery ๐Ÿ™‚
    I must say Mr Wickham looks very pleased with himself in the bottom picture…but who wouldn’t with such a beautiful young lady on his arm eh?
    A x

  2. LadyD says:

    I did wonder with the embroidery if I should go or not as I’m quite…competent and I don’t use commercial patterns…I make it up as I go along.

    ooh, Mr Darcy….then I’d definately have to go again next year.

  3. E.Kate says:

    I’m so enjoying your pictures from your trips!
    Is The Holburne Muesum the house used as Netherfield Park in the 2005 version of Pride and Predjudice? It looks so familiar!
    Love you new outfit! Very beautiful!
    Also I found your blog a few months ago, and this is the first time I am commenting, just have to say, I enjoy it so much! It is nice to see someone else have such fun reenacting, for I know I so enjoy it when I reenact!


  4. Emily says:

    I just went to the annual conference of the Jane Austen Society of North America for the first time – it was amazing, with lots of fascinating sessions and a ball on Saturday night. Your meeting Mr. Wickham made me think of an experience I had there: one of the sessions, The Austen Assizes (Austen characters on trial) had a handsome young actor playing Willoughby, and when he showed up at the ball later, in full Regency evening dress, I realized he honestly looked like Colin Firth! Unfortunately, he was like Mr. Darcy in more ways than one – he danced almost exclusively with the young lady of his own party, and showed no inclination to socialize. My friend and I concluded that perhaps he was not so very handsome after all. : )

  5. Sanna K says:

    Hi! You’ve been nominated with the Versatile Blog award… ๐Ÿ™‚

  6. Aurora says:

    Thank you all for your lovely comments! I’m glad you are enjoying my account of this years festival ๐Ÿ™‚

    Annie and LadyD, I will make sure I post some pictures once I’m done with the embroidery. It’s taking me some time, but that’s mostly because I fear I have been too busy these last few weeks to get much time to work on it.

    E.Kate, I’m so glad you decided to comment, and am very happy to hear you like my blog. ๐Ÿ™‚ It’s such a pleasure to “meet” others with the same interests as me!
    I don’t think the Holborne Museum was used in P&P. But I do agree, it looks very similar and familiar.

    Emily, that is such a great story! I laughed out loud at the last sentance there! How suitable to have someone who looks so much like Mr Darcy, but quite unfortunate that he matched him when it came to the less nice sides too.
    I’m so curious as to the event though, how was it? I don’t live in the US and haven’t been there for quite a while, but I keep hearing of these great annual conferences, and they sound fantastic!

    Sanna K, Thank you so very very much! I am honored and thrilled to have been awarded! That was a most lovely surprise! Thank you again! ๐Ÿ˜€

  7. Aurora, I was so delighted to find your blog! I can’t believe I haven’t seen it till just now, since I’ve been admiring your pictures on for a good number of years. I traveled with Jennie Chancey on the 2000 S&S costume tour, so it’s too bad I didn’t bump into you at the Jane Austen Festival that year! (Here’s the outfit I wore:

    What an exciting event you attended! I’m sure you will always remember the evening, and it’s really quite remarkable to have your picture taken with Mr. Wickham, even if he was the “bad guy” in the show. : ) If they bring Mr. Darcy back next year, well, I just might have to go to the Festival myself again.

    Happy sewing!

  8. Oops! I meant to type that I went to England in 2009, not 2000!

  9. Emily says:

    Aurora: The JASNA conference was lovely. This was my first time, so I wasn’t completely sure what to expect, but I really enjoyed it. The one next year is much closer to where I live, so I will definitely be attending.

    I always drool over your Bath reports, and it’s one of my dreams to get there for the festival someday. You’re so lucky to be able to go to events where Jane actually lived!

  10. Aurora says:

    Katrina, how lovely to hear from a fellow S&S member! Thank you so much for your kind words about my outfits, makes me glad to hear ๐Ÿ™‚ I recognize you from the forum too!
    I can’t remember if I did see you in Bath that year or not, I did meet several of the ladies who were on that tour and I recognize your gorgeous outfit very well. But I’m not sure whether I recognize it from actually having seen it for real or from the pictures I’ve seen from the festival that year. Either way it’s really beautiful! I’ve admired that particular Spencer of Elizabeth’s for a long time and yours is every bit as pretty as hers!

  11. Aurora says:

    Emily, I’m glad to hear that! It’s always difficult to know what to expect at these events when you haven’t been before. I remember feeling like that when I went to the festival the first time.
    I’m happy to hear that you like my Bath reports. My hope is that those who would have liked to go but couldn’t for some reason or other will get a feeling of what it was like. But more than that I hope that you can all experience it for yourselves one day! ๐Ÿ™‚

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