H G Wells festival marks 100 years

Contributed by editor on Sep 21, 2009 - 01:09 PM

The inaugural HG Wells festival in Folkestone saw the launch of the first literary prize for a short handwritten story in the style of Wells.

The prize is the bequest of Sandgate resident Reginald Turnill, BBC aerospace correspondent and author of H G Wells, Love and Literature in Sandgate, 1896-1909.

Visitors enjoyed talks about the author, an exhibition of pictures and art work inspired by Wells' The Sea Lady and a guided walk around Folkestone in the footsteps of one of his greatest creations, the draper Arthur Kipps.

Wells who wrote the science fiction classics The Time Machine, The War of the Worlds and The Invisible Man, lived in Sandgate, near Folkestone for 13 years.

At the time the area was magnet for writers with Joseph Conrad living in nearby Postling, Henry James in Rye and  Edith Nesbitt who wrote The Railway Children, in Dymchurch.

In 1909 Wells left Sandgate to live in London and one hundred years after his departure, local residents decided to hold the festival "in honour of his genius".

© Hawkinge Gazette and Channel Coast News 2009