Dunfermline roadshow

NLS pays tribute to local heroes through Dunfermline roadshow

Local heroes will be the focus of a roadshow the National Library of Scotland is bringing to Dunfermline next week.

NLS curators have carefully selected an array of fascinating items with particular relevance to Dunfermline and Fife, providing a not-to-be-missed glimpse into the town's past at Dunfermline Carnegie Library from November 1-3.

The roadshow will bring with it an array of exciting books, manuscripts, maps, music, and moving images - and, paying homage to some of the area's heroes, will include materials relating to well-known names, including Jock Stein, Moira Shearer, Andrew Carnegie and Mary Somerville, to name but a few.

Martyn Wade, National Librarian and CEO of the National Library of Scotland, said: 'Through the roadshow we hope to increase our engagement with communities across Scotland, giving a taster of what is on offer at the National Library of Scotland by displaying items with a strong local connection.

'We will have a selection of modern books, which visitors can handle, as well as a variety of interesting images from across our various collections. I'm sure the roadshow, and in particular the items related to local heroes, will prove to be a huge draw for the public.'

A new feature introduced especially for the roadshow's Dunfermline visit is a talk on Fife hero Mary Somerville, one of the most distinguished and celebrated popularisers of science in the nineteenth century. You can hear more about how she overcame the gender restrictions of the age, to produce best selling books which led to international acclaim. (Talk: Nov 2, 11am-12pm).

Also on display will be facsimile copies of music compiled by Fife-born music publisher George Thomson, who commissioned music from notable European composers, including Pleyel, Beethoven and Haydn, for his famous collections of Scottish song. The Thomson facsimiles will be shown alongside a contemporary pirate edition.

Other key highlights will be replica pages from the Culross Psalter - a 15th century Book of Psalms - and the Dunfermline Cartulary, a book relating to Dunfermline Abbey.

There will also be an opportunity to view copies of pages from 'The Chepman and Myllar prints'. This volume is one of the first 10 items inscribed on the new UNESCO Memory of the World UK Register. The pages on display contain verse by the medieval poet Robert Henryson as they were first printed around 1508 on Scotland's first printing press, established in Edinburgh by Walter Chepman and Androw Myllar.

Ensuring the roadshow has plenty on offer to suit all interests, there will be an interactive element with a variety of insightful workshops and talks covering a range of topics. These include family history, mapping of Fife from the 1590s to the present day, and the National Library of Scotland's services and collections. There will also be a workshop on how to access NLS resources remotely from Dunfermline as the Library offers an extensive range of digitised material online at the click of a button. On November 2 from 7-8pm, the roadshow will also feature a film show showcasing key films in Scotland's history, together with local footage of Dunfermline and the surrounding area from the Scottish Screen Archive (part of the National Library of Scotland). There will even be an opportunity for some early Christmas shopping at the roadshow's shop.

In addition there will be plenty of children's activities to educate and entertain. In a series of tailored workshops P5-7 pupils from the area will get the chance to learn 'how to be a history detective'. There is even something on offer for teachers, with a continued personal development (CPD) session lined up.

The roadshow takes place from November 1-3 at Dunfermline Carnegie Library, Abbot Street, Dunfermline.

27 October 2010

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