Jane Austen Festival-goers turn heads on Bath to Trowbridge train trip

Jane Austen Festival attendees line the platform at Bath Spa Station
Jane Austen Festival attendees line the platform at Bath Spa Station

Fans of one of England's most famous novelists have been turning heads as they celebrated their literary hero with a walkabout in period dress.

About 800 people are set to attend the annual Jane Austen Festival, which runs until 17 September.

Earlier, almost 50 people in period dress lined the platform at Bath Spa station to take a train to Trowbridge.

They enjoyed a tour of the Wiltshire town's Georgian buildings before having afternoon tea at Parade House.

People in period dress on train
Festival-goers in period dress provided an interesting sight for passengers travelling between Bath and Trowbridge
Georgia Delve
Georgia Delve, Jane Austen Festival director, said they want to expand the event to more areas

The festival is based in Bath, but this year the organisers wanted to expand the popular event to new parts of the region.

Trowbridge town crier Trevor Heeks welcomed the ladies and gentlemen in their period outfits, before they went on to play regency parlour games and then caught a train back to Bath.

People in period dress
Guests enjoy the event in their finery
Women walking in period costume
Fashionable shade from the sun was required on a warm September day

Fans of the author travelled from around the globe for the event, some from the United States and others travelling from countries such as Denmark and Czech Republic.

The annual 10-day festival celebrates the life and work of novelist Jane Austen, known for novels including Pride and Prejudice and Sense and Sensibility.

Four people in period dress
Premysl and Hans Polasek travelled from Czech Republic and Mark Dogerty and Kathryn Wattam from Denmark
Emily and Deborah McGeary
Emily and Deborah McGeary travelled from Tucson, Arizona

Austen was born on 16 December 1775, in the Hampshire village of Steventon where her father was the local clergyman

She began writing as a teenager and published books, anonymously during her lifetime, based on her observations of middle and upper-class Regency England.

Woman in period costume
Afternoon tea was enjoyed at Parade House in Trowbridge
Diners in Regency outfits sitting at a table
Guests enjoyed regency parlour games after their afternoon tea

The novelist lived in Bath from 1801 before moving to Southampton and then the Hampshire village of Chawton after her father died.

She died in Winchester in 1817 at the age of 41, and is buried in the city's famous cathedral

Group in front of Parade House
The group travelled to Parade House in Trowbridge for afternoon tea

Her books Persuasion and Northanger Abbey were published posthumously, and a final novel was left incomplete

A vast array of events including croquet games, walking tours and promenades around the city are being held every day until the festival comes to an end on Sunday.

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