A talk on Bedford-born author Mark Rutherford to mark the centenary of his death will be held in the town.
The civil servant and journalist penned what was described by George Orwell as ‘one of the best novels in English’.
The Higgins Bedford will host a talk on him on Tuesday, October 29.
Working as a civil servant and part time journalist, it wasn’t until his late forties that William Hale White adopted the pseudonym Mark Rutherford and began his literary career.
His work tells the stories of ordinary Victorians interwoven with personal autobiographical details and the progressive ideals of the author.
The talk at The Higgins Bedford is by critic and playwright, Mark Crees who has been researching Rutherford.
Crees said: ‘Hale White was a civil servant by day and yet he wrote these very moving, Hardyesque novels at night; he was so secretive about his writing that not even his wife seemed to know. ..I think the readers will be surprised by his talent.
“George Orwell once said that Rutherford had written “one of the best novels in English.” It’s a large claim, but I can only agree, wholeheartedly.”
The talk at The Higgins Bedford marks the centenary of Rutherford’s death in 1913.
It is an opportunity to hear Rutherford’s work being read, in his home town of Bedford, a short distance from his birthplace on Bedford High Street.
He attended Bedford Modern School - and there is a now school in the town named after him.
There will also be a chance to view Mark Crees’ collection of rare first-editions of Rutherford’s works.
Tickets for Mark Rutherford’s People: A selection of readings by Mark Crees cost £10, concessions £8, including a complimentary drink. It takes place on Tuesday, October 29 from 5.3opm to 7.30pm at The Higgins Bedford in
Castle Lane.For booking call 01234 718618 or email firstname.lastname@example.org