RMA Started talks with the client about Dickens World in 2000, were awarded the contract in 2006 and opened the finished attraction in 2007.
A consortium of private investors saw Dickens World as a great opportunity to celebrate the work, life and times of Britain’s most popular literary figure.
The attraction is located on an old submarine base at Chatham Dockyard, the Medway towns being of significant importance within the history of Charles Dickens.
RMA worked with a total budget of £9.4 million for the one year project, which included the design, build and installation of all scenic, mechanical, electrical, theatrical and production elements of the attraction.
The complex, which features street scenes, courtyards and alleyways was built full-size, and includes steel-structured bridges, an underground water-ride depicting scenes from the darker side of Dickensian London, and a Theatre Show complete with an animatronic Charles Dickens, who narrates a show based on the great man’s stories and novels. The attraction also features a 4D Theatre portraying the travels of Dickens, an interactive Victorian Schoolroom, Themed Kids play area, Restaurant and bar area, Haunted House dark-walk through and shop. RMA director Rick Matthews read and researched almost all of Dickens’ work, and liaised closely with the Dickens Fellowship during the process of preparing the original concept designs.
Every detail was painstakingly researched – even the shops and businesses in the cobbled streets are branded with trading names taken from Dickens’ stories.
Every detail of the attraction was designed by RMA, from the shop and restaurant to the 120 metre long graphic outside the building.
Dickens World is now a popular venue for private events and has been used as a location for pop videos, TV shows and private events.