School library dedicated to Maeve Binchy

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On 28th January 2017, the Holy Child School in Killiney dedicated its newly refurbished library to Maeve. Gordon was delighted to be asked to cut the ribbon and here is what he had to say about it:

Opening of the newly refurbished library dedicated to Maeve Binchy at Holy Child School in KillineyMaeve really enjoyed her school days at Holy Child School in Killiney, not far from her family home in Dalkey. Always talkative, then and in later life, she also loved to be surrounded by books, in the silence of the school library, At home too her room was crammed with shelves of books, which she grouped rather eccentrically, not by subject or author, but by the colour of the covers. It was a system she went on using for her Penguin paperbacks in our Dalkey home.

So I was delighted and proud to be asked to open the new school library, housed now in a big, bright room with several large tables and wooden chairs painted in a variety of colours. The books are arranged on shelves on every wall, classified, luckily for the readers, in a more conventional way than Maeve’s colour-coding. It’s an airy, friendly place, inviting relaxation, reading and browsing.

We gathered in the main hall. Over a hundred teachers, students, parents, past pupils, family members and friends. There was animated conversation, canapes and cakes and then some speeches of welcome, memories and plans for the future.

Maeve and I always enjoyed celebrations, so it was gratifying that we moved on to the library itself, pausing in the corridor for the cutting of a red ribbon. In the library I whisked away a red velvet curtain to unveil a brass plaque commemorating the occasion and paying tribute to Maeve.

Opening of the newly refurbished library dedicated to Maeve Binchy at Holy Child School in KillineyIt was a joyful event, exactly as Maeve would have wanted – and I wish the future users of the Maeve Binchy Library as much happiness among the books as Maeve herself had at the School.


Gordon Snell