THE ARC in Winchester will get a dose of literary history with a new talk.

The novelist Dr Cheryl Butler will lecture on Jane Austen's work in anticipation of the 250th anniversary of the author's birth next year.

The fundraising event for Hampshire History Trust will take place on Friday, July 19, from 7.30-8.30pm. 

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Dr Cheryl Butler (Image: Hampshire History Trust)

The talk will focus on Austen’s first novel Northanger Abbey and its connections with Gothic tourism.

Dr Butler will reflect on the author’s love for gothic fiction and the public’s interest in medieval ruins such as Southampton’s Netley Abbey where writers, poets, artists and tourists would visit in the hopes of seeing ghostly monks, and other apparitions. 

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As a contributing editor for the Southampton Record Series, Dr Butler's twin passion for history and drama have driven her work as a playwright, novelist and lecturer.

She is a fellow of the Royal Historical Society and a keen supporter of several heritage organisations. 

Winchester is a fitting place for the talk close as it is to Jane Austen's house in Chawton and where she died in College Street.

It was at her cottage in Chawton that she penned arguably her most famous novel – Pride and Prejudice.