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Linen Hall Powers Into 2022 With Blast of Cultural Events

It’s a new year and a new schedule of cultural events at the Linen Hall Library. Former Linen Hall governor Andrew Gibson takes centre stage with an exhibition starting 4 January. Find out how this collector of poet Robert Burns’ material in the early 20th century was responsible for the Library’s world-renowned Burns’ archive. 

We also mark Holocaust Memorial Day on 27 January with a talk focusing on concentration camp survivors who arrived in Northern Ireland to start a new life after World War II. And our popular reading groups fire up again for a year of book reviews and discussion. 

January event schedule: 

Andrew Gibson: An Ardent son
4 – 28 January
In the Library
The Linen Hall holds one of the world’s largest collections of Scottish poet Roberts Burns’ work and associated miscellany outside of Scotland. Former Linen Hall Library governor Andrew Gibson (1841 – 1931) is to thank in large part for this archive. The story behind the purchase and maintenance of the collection, as well as a display of highlights from the collection, will be available to view throughout January.

Club Leabhar
Irish language reading group
Saturday 8 January at 11am
Online ZOOM event
Want to brush up on your Irish language skills? Join the Linen Hall’s Irish Language Reading Group which meets online. January’s title is An Fear nárbh fhéidir a Fheiscint (translation of H.G. Wells)

Dunluce by Neill Speers
Reading by Dan Gordon and Marty Maguire
Tuesday 18 January at 1.00pm
In the Library
John McDonnell and Willy McQuillan are in their seventies. Lifelong friends, they spend their days rekindling boisterous boyhoods. They go for long walks and experiment with pyrotechnics in their shared sheds. On their walks they have learned not to take the road leading to Dunluce castle. Its looming presence reminds them of a bitter feud for the castle, which began between their families, four hundred years ago. One sunny afternoon they decide to deal with the ‘Dunluce effect’ by walking in each other’s shoes. Actors Dan Gordon and Marty Maguire bring this adventure to life with a dramatic reading.

Andrew Gibson Memorial Lecture 2022
With TV presenter Alistair Heather
Monday 24 January at 7.00pm
Online ZOOM event
Alistair heather is a writer and broadcaster from Scotland with a passion for the poet Robert Burns and the Scots language. Tune in to this online (ZOOM) event to hear Alistair’s unique take on Burns collector Gibson, Burns and the Linen Hall Library. The lecture will be followed by a Q&A with Alistair Heather and Josh Bircham.

Holocaust Memorial Day
From Auschwitz to Ulster: One Day that Changed and Saved Lives
With Linen Hall Cultural Events Assistant Scott Edgar
Thursday 27 January at 1.00pm
In the Library plus online ZOOM stream
The theme for Holocaust Memorial Day is ‘One Day’. The Linen Hall’s Scott Edgar will look at ‘one day’ in history that changed the lives of young Jews from across Europe following the liberation of one of the most notorious concentration camps Auschwitz. On 24 February 1946, military planes landed in Sydenham, Belfast bringing dozens of teens to a new life of safety and freedom. From there, they went to rural Co. Down and on to achieve great things across the globe. Hear their story!

Linen Hall Reading Group
Thursday 27 January at 1.00pm
Online ZOOM event
The Linen Hall’s popular reading group meets via ZOOM. January’s title is ‘When All is Said’ by Anne Griffin.

The Linen Hall will close from 2.30pm Friday 24 December until Tuesday 4 January at 9.30am for the Christmas holidays.