Christchurch sketchbook: Hidden treasure #1

One man’s trash, another man’s treasure  – words that keep echoing in my head every time I go into the Aotearoa New Zealand area here at Central Library Tuam. I talked a couple of weeks ago about the ‘old stuff’ that we have here and how mesmerising and distracting it can be. I thought I’d illustrate this some more as we focus in October on the theme of Rediscovering Christchurch.  So in this spirit of rediscovery I am venturing back into the shelves in search of more treasure.
Christchurch sketchbook by Unk White, text by Monte Holcroft

Today’s find: a little green volume called Christchurch Sketchbook, published in 1968.  A collection of pen and ink drawings by Unk White, with accompanying text by MH Holcroft, this is a wee gem that made me laugh, describing the Antigua boatsheds as a place where:

Icecream and soft drinks are sold briskly to customers in short pants.

and cry (remembering the heartbreak of watching the Provincial Chambers fall)

And then there could be seen in Durham Street a remarkable sight – a Gothic structure with arches, buttresses, windows and a magnificent entrance … viewed across a landscape of tussock, flax bushes, and a few lonely willows.

and feel proud to be a librarian

 … in all this time the [old Public] library continued quietly to grow … and under good librarians has made a fine contribution to a city whose people have always been fond of books.

Watch this space for more hidden treasures to be discovered!

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