EVESHAM literary lovers are invited to join American-born Linda Hart and John Burns for a dramatised reading of 84 Charing Cross Road, the famous story of a 20-year transatlantic correspondence between Helen Hanff and Frank Doel.  

It’s 1949 and the American bibliophile, Helen Hanff, is on a one-woman mission to unearth some of the most obscure titles in British literature.

Her search leads her to Frank Doel, a London-based collector and seller of second hand books and this is the start of two decades of correspondence about everything from the words of Chaucer to making Yorkshire pudding!

Move on to 1970 and Helene Hanff publishes her work, 84 Charing Cross Road, which was later dramatised for the stage and in 1987 a film directed by Mel Brooks and starring Anne Bancroft and Anthony Hopkins.

A shared love of literature was the basis of what became a warm friendship as Helen sends Frank off in search of Quiller-Couch, Elizabethan love poems, The Canterbury Tales, The Oxford Book of English Verse and many other tomes.  It is a story full of charm warmth and humour.

Saturday, October 5, marks 70 years to the day since the date of the first letter from Helen.  Join this auspicious occasion for a one-off performance for Evesham Festival of Words at Hampton Community Hall.

Festival chairman Sue Ablett said: “The story of Helene Hanff and Frank Doel is one which will warm anyone’s heart.

"We are delighted to include this event on the precise anniversary of the first letter as part of Evesham Festival of Words 2019 year-round programme of events.”

Tickets for this one-off performance, which starts at 6.30pm, are £8 each, to include wine and nibbles.  

Further information is available on the festival’s website, eveshamfestivalofwords.org or call 07871 285606 or contact Evesham’s Almonry Museum in Vine Street.