Monday, 5 September 2011

Gladstone's tin taberncle

At another time I will explain how I've landed up at Gladstone's residential library in Harwarden . Suffice to say that I'm here with work for a couple of days

After Gladstone conceived the idea of building a library to house his collection  32 000 books -his diary suggests that he read 22 000 in some detail-the question arose what of building would house them. Well the initial answer was to build a 'tin tabernacle'. It was to this corrugated iron building that Gladstone wheeled his vast collection of books. He also rented the former village school to become  hostel for readers.

It was not until after his death that the amazing mock gothic masterpiece which replaced the tin tabernacle was built as a National memorial to the GOM. As Gladstone planned it provides 'inexpensive lodging' and 'congenial society'.

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