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In February 1854, the great Victorian novelist Charles Dickens took the train from London's Euston station to Preston and it is thought that what he saw on his arrival in the town inspired the novel Hard Times, published later that year. In this book, Preston historian David Hindle looks at aspects of life for the people in this booming industrial town, from the early port and the railways, which arrived in the town in the 1840s, and the conditions that so appalled Charles Dickens in the 1850s to the burgeoning entertainment industries of the music halls, and the first cinematographic performances, which appeared in the later years of the Victorian era. Although Preston was largely an industrial town, members of the gentry lived nearby, and David Hindle also examines this aspect of life in the town. This book is an altogether fascinating insight into life in Victorian Preston.