Library book found after 50 years stashed away

SBSR Keith Anderson library book  50 years overdue
SBSR Keith Anderson library book 50 years overdue

A Selkirk High School library book which was taken out 50 years ago has been found during a clear out.

Keith Anderson (66), a former Knowepark Primary School and Selkirk High School student, discovered the missing book while he was clearing out books from his current home in the Willowbrae area of Edinburgh.

Mr Anderson said that he was in the process of donating over a thousand books to the Marie Curie hospice when he came across the forgotten library book entitled ‘A Practical Course in Secondary English’.

Speaking about what he plans to do with the book now, he said: “Well I should possibly return it to Selkirk High School... I think I should return it for its 50 year anniversary.”

The English book was available in the Selkirk High School library up until the time Mr Anderson sat his ‘O’ level in English.

He borrowed the book in 1966, exactly 50 years ago. It was first taken out in the year 1952.

He added: “I’m not keen on keeping it and I don’t think my children would want it either.”

It is unlikely that the book would be very useful to Selkirk High School students today as ‘O’ levels were replaced with Standard Grades back in 1977 and, in 2014, Standard Grades were replaced by Nationals.

Mr Anderson is not alone in forgetting to return a library book for many years. US President George Washington borrowed a book from the New York Society Library in 1789 and the book was not returned for 221 years. The fine would have cost him $300,000 if he had been alive.

The most expensive fine ever paid to a library was $345.14 (£203.29), according to Guinness World Records.