Civic, HP, Surrey County Council

Surrey History Centre to feature in BBC documentary on Alice author Lewis Carroll

A groundbreaking BBC documentary on Alice in Wonderland author Lewis Carroll draws heavily on extensive collections of letters and photos housed in Surrey.Carroll biscuit tin lid crop close up

Surrey County Council’s History Centre holds several significant Carroll archives featuring many of his original photos, sketches, notes and letters to family and friends.

Filming at Surrey History Centre in Woking forms part of a new BBC2 documentary being screened tomorrow to mark 150 years since the first publication of Alice.

Lewis Carroll was the pen name of the Reverend Charles Lutwidge Dodgson, who wrote Alice in Wonderland and Through the Looking Glass after inventing stories to amuse a girl named Alice Liddell on boating trips and picnics with her and her family.

The archives held at Surrey History Centre give an insight into various aspects of his life – as Lewis Carroll the writer, as an Oxford mathematics don and an amateur photographer.

Helyn Clack, Surrey County Council’s Cabinet Member for Community Services, said: ‘Surrey’s history is rich and varied and a source of information for members of the public and researchers alike.

‘We are committed to preserving records of historical significance so they remain publicly available at Surrey History Centre for all to access.

‘Our role is to ensure these archives are maintained so current and future generations can study them and draw their own conclusions.’

BBC presenter Martha Kearney visits Surrey History Centre for the documentary titled The Secret World of Lewis Carroll.

A letter from the centre’s collection forms a crucial part of the programme and its photos are used throughout.

The Carroll archives are among thousands of historic documents housed at the centre which date back as far as the 12th century.

The records chart the lives of millions of people who have lived, worked and died in Surrey and include baptism, marriage and burial registers going as far back as the Tudor period.

As part of the 150th anniversary celebrations, a series of Carroll-themed events will be taking place across the country including at Surrey History Centre and in Surrey libraries. Details of these will be posted on the council’s website.

Click here for more information about the Lewis Carroll collections at Surrey History Centre.

*The Secret World of Lewis Carroll is screened on Saturday 31 January on BBC2 at 9pm

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