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Annual commemoration 2023

The Society’s annual Johnson commemoration and reception will take place on Saturday, 9th December, 2023. Please note that we will be changing the times and format this year.

The wreath-laying will take place at 2:00 pm at Westminster Abbey, when the wreath will be laid by our guest of honour, the actor, writer and speaker (and long-term member of the Society) Karin Fernald.

We are delighted that the afternoon events will this year be taking place at Dr Johnson’s House, 17 Gough Square, London, EC4A 3DE. This was Johnson’s home from about 1749 to 1759 and there could be no more fitting place for our meeting. Following the wreath-laying, those attending should make their way to the House, where you will be welcomed with tea or coffee and a mince pie.

At 4:00 pm Karin Fernald will give a presentation entitled ‘The rattlesnake and the elephant: the story of the friendship between Samuel Johnson and Hester Thrale’, in the garret at Dr Johnson’s House.

A reception in the House will follow from 5:00 pm to 7:00 pm. This will consist of hot and cold canapés and wine. The cost of attendance will be £45 per head.

If you wish to attend, please book by 18th November. In order to book, please complete the form below and send it to our luncheon secretary, Miriam Al Jamil, at johnsonluncheon@gmail.com. Payment should be made according to the instructions on the form.

Travel from Westminster Abbey to Dr Johnson’s House

There are three travel options:

  • Underground – Circle or District Line from Westminster to Blackfriars, then walk to Gough Square. The walk from Blackfriars takes about 10 minutes.
  • Bus – No 26 from Westminster Abbey (Victoria Street) to Fetter Lane, approximately 26 minutes.
  • Taxi

For further details and booking information, please download the booking form (in PDF) from this link.

A Word version of this file is here.

The full programme of events for 2023-2024 can be downloaded here.

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