This beautiful handwritten script of Oliver Twist is part of the Sadler's Wells Archive, which is held at Islington Local History Centre.
The work was adapted by the manager of Sadler's Wells, Mr R Honner, and written out by the copyist of the theatre. It is based on the serial written by Charles Dickens under the pseudonym 'Boz', which appeared in monthly instalments in Bentley's Miscellany magazine from February 1837. It was performed at Sadler's Wells in December 1838, before the serialisation was completed. The theatre was famed for its adaptations of popular novels of the time.
Charles Dickens knew Islington well and was a customer of the Finsbury Savings Bank on Sekforde Street. He also used areas of Islington in his novels - Clerkenwell Green is where Fagin and the Artful Dodger induct Oliver into the art of pickpocketing.