Literally mystery gift for Borders libraries

Mairi White, library supervisor at Melrose Library, hangs the anonymously donated Peter Pan picture.
Mairi White, library supervisor at Melrose Library, hangs the anonymously donated Peter Pan picture.

Three libraries in the Scottish Borders were the rather surprised recipients of anonymous donations, as Melrose, Earlston and Kelso libraries were each given a framed picture, accompanied by a note containing a quote from Plato.

Melrose Library was handed their picture by staff from a nearby coffee shop, who had been asked to give it to them by a person who did not wish to be known.

The picture is a hand-cut illustration of a scene from Peter Pan with text from Chapter Four, The Flight.

A similar style of picture was handed into Earlston Library, this one depicting a scene from the Harry Potter series.

Both were donated in appreciation of the work done by libraries and galleries across the Borders.

The quote from Plato reads: “Paper is the perfect vehicle for expression of words and art. All of these mediums come together in the form of books. Books give a soul to the universe, wings to the mind, flight to the imagination and life to everything.”

And the quote is joined by a note, presumably from the donator, which says: “This illustration has been hand cut from one sheet of paper. Please accept it in celebration of the work libraries and galleries do. Extraordinary buildings that offer anyone free access to thousands of portals through which we can disappear, broaden our minds and find ourselves.”

And as we were preparing to go to press yesterday, we were told by Facebook follower Kirstin Johnston of another picture donation, this time to Kelso library.

Irene Wallace, customer services advisor at the library, told us: “This one is of the Hound of the Baskervilles. It’s very unusual and I’m sure people will love to see it. We have no idea who donated the picture, but it’s a very welcome donation.

“It’s a mystery!”

Councillor Vicky Davidson, Scottish Borders Council’s executive member for culture, said: “Our Library Services team is delighted with these generous donations and would like to thank the donor very much.

“The gesture of support for our libraries and galleries is greatly appreciated.

“The pictures will be given a real focus when they are hung in their respective libraries and I do hope that people will take the time to see and appreciate these mystery pictures for the generosity of spirit that they represent.”

z Do you know who the mystery artwork benefactor is? Let us know on southern-newsdesk@jpress.co.uk