Oxford University

Why I donated to the Weston Library

The state-of-the-art Weston Library will open to all in March 2015. Many individuals have made a donation by dedicating a chair in the lecture theatre or the reading rooms in the new building. One of these donors is Peggy Heeks, Emeritus Fellow at the Oxford Centre for Christianity and Culture at Regent’s Park College, who donated £500 towards a reading room chair.

Photo Credit Peggy Heeks by Keith Barnes

‘I like to feel that for years to come there will be people using that chair. That’s one of the attractions of the Bodleian, this sense of continuity. I am very much in favour of the Weston – it will be so much better than the New Bodleian. The architecture is just beautiful. You will also be able to get a cup of coffee in there, and go to exhibitions – it will be an enormous improvement.

I like to feel that for years to come there will be people using that chair.

I have used the Bodleian in the past for my work. I am a fellow at Regent’s Park College, and I’ve just finished some work that required me to go into the Radcliffe Camera to research the history of the congregational church. I find that staff are extremely helpful and accessible. I believe that we suffer generally from a lack of commitment and, as a librarian, I am committed to libraries, learning and education. This is why I became a Friend of the Bodleian, and later a member of Bodley’s Circle [a group of people who support the Bodleian through legacy pledges]. I think we should support the Bodleian – there’s a great tradition of doing so. Thomas Bodley, when he first set up the Bodleian many years ago, wanted to ‘stirre up men’s benevolence’. That is still the aim today.’

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