The University of Kent, Canterbury, Kent, CT2 7NZ, T +44 (0)1227 764000
University campaign to preserve historic collection gains global momentum
More than 3000 people have now signed the Universitys online petition to persuade the Law Society of England and Wales not to break up a unique historic collection of several thousand manuscripts, early and rare books, and pamphlets. The campaign has also attracted high levels of support on Twitter.
The University, together with Canterbury Cathedral, is asking the Law Society to reconsider its intention to break up the Mendham Collection which contains about 5,000 invaluable items. The Collection is owned by the Society but has been held under the custodianship of the University and Cathedral for nearly thirty years. During this time, it has been an invaluable academic resource not just for students and staff at the University, but has also attracted researchers from across the globe as well as in the UK.
Diarmaid MacCulloch, Professor of the History of the Church, University of Oxford, is among the academics and researchers world-wide who have expressed their anger at the Law Societys intention to dismantle the collection. He said: This really is an act of vandalism on a collection which contains the annotations of the collector. This is always a reason for maintaining the collection's integrity, quite apart from the intrinsic historic interest and value of the individual books.'
Dr Alixe Bovey, Director of the University's Centre for Medieval and Early Modern Studies, said: I would like to thank all those who have supported our campaign, and hope that they will continue to work with us for as long as it takes for the Law Society to reverse this decision.'
Anyone wishing to support the campaign can sign the petition at https://www.change.org/en-GB/petitions/the-law-society-of-england-and-wales-stop-the-break-up-and-sale-of-the-mendham-collection
Story published at 4:26pm 8 August 2012