Urgent appeal to save rare books from Chawton House Library
Chawton House Library in Hampshire has recently launched an urgent book conservation appeal. The library, which contains rare women’s literature, holds work by authors including Jane Austen and Mary Shelley.
Chawton House Library contains around 10,000 books of English women's writing from 1600 to 1830. Around £60,000 is needed for the restoration of approximately 75% of the collection. Independent researcher Dr. Helen Cole says that the link the books provide with the past is ‘irreplaceable’. Conservation is necessary due to historic damage and to ensure the books are available for future generations.
The funds would be spent on training volunteers to undertake minor repairs on the books. Speaking about the appeal, development director Keith Arscott said "We have been highly commended as to how we keep [the books] - but they do need money spending on them."
Books in need of repair include a second edition of Jane Austen's Sense And Sensibility and Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein.
The library is based in the manor house which belonged to Jane Austen’s brother Edward Knight.
For more information or to contribute to the appeal, visit the Chawton House website.
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