Page last updated at 09:11 GMT, Wednesday, 21 October 2009 10:11 UK
Malvern - the Narnia connection
Gas Lamp
One of the famous gas street lamps in Malvern

C.S. Lewis once wrote that the idea for the Narnia books came to him from images.

In particular, he was referring to the Golden Valley and the Wye Valley in Herefordshire.

There may even be a Malvern connection to the famous lamp-post in the Narnia stories.

A local urban myth says that Lewis was inspired by one of the famous gas lamps in the town.

C.S. Lewis, was a pupil at Malvern College for a year just before the First World War.

He then moved on to study at University College, Oxford, and later was a lecturer at Oxford's Magdalen College for almost 30 years.

During his time in Oxford he was a member of a literary circle of friends, calling themselves 'The Inklings', who included J.R.R. Tolkien, amongst others.

He also taught a student called George Sayer, who went on to teach at Malvern College for 30 years.

Lewis and Tolkein stayed good friends with George Sayer, and the three used to walk on the Malvern hills.

The story goes that, after drinking in a Malvern pub one winter evening, they were walking home when it started to snow.

They saw a lamp post shining out through the snow, and Lewis turned to his friends and said 'that would make a very nice opening line to a book'.

And so it did.




SEE ALSO
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CS Lewis letter tells tales of Narnia
14 Jun 06 |  Northern Ireland


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