Providing cancer information and support in Edinburgh

macmillan-logoFinding out that you or someone close to you has cancer is life changing. For many it is an introduction to a new and unfamiliar world; one which impacts on every aspect of your life, from your emotions and relationships to your health and even finances. And this can often feel overwhelming.

Knowing what practical, emotional and financial support is available in your area can make the future seem a little less daunting.

macmillan-2Our Macmillan @ Edinburgh Libraries programme is there to give free and confidential information and support to people affected by cancer, whether they are newly diagnosed, finished treatment, a friend, family member or carer. Trained volunteers and cancer support specialists are on hand to provide a listening ear and information on everything from local support groups to help for the financial problems cancer may create.

Information and support sessions can currently be found in Central and Craigmillar Libraries, with sessions at Leith and Drumbrae Libraries set to open in the spring. And you don’t need to make an appointment to visit. Each library has worked hard to provide a warm and welcoming space where people can find lots of information on cancer and its impacts, as well as reading material that may help on a range of topics such as healthy eating.

craigmillan-mac-point

All of the cancer books can be requested free of charge from any of our
Libraries. And if the library information point hasn’t got exactly what you are looking for, more specialist information can be ordered free of charge from Macmillan.

Knowing that there is someone else to talk to, and can understand what you’re going through can be a huge help. Our library service is there to make sure that no one in Edinburgh has to face cancer alone.

The opening hours of the service are:
Craigmillar Library            Monday 11am – 3pm
Central Library                 Tuesday 3 – 7pm
Craigmillar Library           Thursday 11am – 3pm
Central Library                 Friday 11am – 3pm

For more information call 0131 242 8125 or email Macmillan.Libraries@edinburgh.gov.uk

Funded by Macmillan Cancer Support, Macmillan @ Edinburgh Libraries is part of a £1 million initiative to provide support to people affected by cancer in the capital. It works closely with other Macmillan projects in the area, including our Move More Edinburgh programme with Edinburgh Leisure, Macmillan and the City of Edinburgh Council’s Welfare Rights programme, and Cancer Support Scotland’s counselling and mindfulness courses.

 

Our writer in residence

The Scottish Book Trust recently announced the 2017 winners of their New Writers Award. You may have seen this picture in the press or on social media. Standing front and centre is our very own, Simon Brown, Library Advisor at Fountainbridge Library!

Scottish Book Trust New Writers Award Winners 2017 - photograph by Rob McDougall

Scottish Book Trust New Writers Award Winners 2017 – photograph by Rob McDougall

We’re delighted for him and thought it only right to ask him to tell us a little bit more about the award, his writing and how this fits with working in the Library:

Simon Brown, New Writer Award Winner and Library Advisor at Fountainbridge

Simon Brown, New Writer Award Winner and Library Advisor at Fountainbridge – image by Rob McDougall

I’m still not sure this isn’t some sort of elaborate prank. Someone somewhere must’ve made a terrible mistake.

Even after having visited the lovely folks at the Scottish Book Trust and accepting a New Writers Award, it still doesn’t feel real somehow. It’s something I’ve dreamt about for years; I’m one step closer to the day when I shelve my own book – or, more likely, the day when I get an earful from a reader who hated it.

People always ask where you get your ideas from. My answer is easy: libraries. And I’m not talking about all the books on the shelves – which, as any library advisor will tell you, are just the tip of the iceberg – but the people who frequent our libraries, day in, day out.

We meet sad people, happy people, troubled people, lonely people. Sometimes these are the same person. We meet those with nothing and those with a lot. We meet refugees taking their first English classes; we meet old people who’ll talk your ear off if you’re not careful.

They all come to us. It’s impossible not to find even a little inspiration in that. I’m not just talking about writers here; we’re lucky enough to count painters, musicians, playwrights and actors among our staff. Edinburgh Libraries contain a tremendous amount of passion and creativity and perhaps we need to tap into that, now more than ever.

Read all about it – 200 years old today!

Today marks the 200th anniversary of the The Scotsman. When it first appeared, it was a weekly newspaper with daily editions appearing in 1850.

Unlike today there were no headlines shouting out for attention, indeed the front page of the first edition laid out what the paper hoped to achieve. It begged to observe “that we have not chosen the name Scotsman to preserve an invidious distinction, but with a view of rescuing it from the odium of servility”.

Front page of The Scotsman 25th January 1817

Front page of The Scotsman 25th January 1817

The paper contained no photographs or illustrations just printed text with news from around the world. It did feature Births, Deaths and Marriages together with the market prices from the Edinburgh Corn Market and Meat Market where we know that “there were 985 sheep in the Grassmarket on Wednesday morning which sold well”.

In 1817 the price of the weekly Scotsman was 10d nowadays you can read it for FREE by downloading our Pressreader  App.

Or why not search our Scotsman Digital Archive and discover more stories from Scotland’s past?

 

Bobby visits Central Library

We celebrated the life and times of Greyfriars Bobby by inviting champion Skye Terrier Hanna and her pup Murren to the library to meet with a group of schoolchildren from Abbeyhill Primary School.

At Central Library

Moira and Katie with their Skye Terriers Hanna and Murren at Central Library

Hanna’s owner Moira shared her lifelong fascination with this legendary Edinburgh story and her dedication to the now rare Skye Terrier breed.  Moira’s granddaughter Katie took charge of the pup, but like many youngsters Murren was too fidgety for a photo shoot at the famous statue. But well done to Hanna for staying put, and we were glad that no one rubbed her nose!

Hanna and Bobby

Hanna and Bobby

There’s no business like snow business…

“Snowflakes are one of nature’s most fragile things, but look what they can do when they stick together” – unknown

Seventy years ago, in 1947 Britain suffered the severest winter for centuries. Between January and March that year, snow fell everyday somewhere in the country for 55 days in a row.

Digging out the Borders Railway in snow

Digging out the Borders Railway in snow

On 10 and 11 March, Scotland had its heaviest snowfall of the winter with snowdrifts up to seven metres deep reported. There were severe disruptions to energy supplies to homes, offices and factories and many businesses shut down temporarily.

Digging out the Waverley Line

With snow covering the track of the Waverley Line, this had to be dug out manually. Men were roped together for safety but in spite of the cold they were in everyday working clothes and some were even bare-headed and without gloves.

Job done!

The strangest thing about 1947 was that the first part of the winter was very mild, with temperatures in some places reaching 14c.

There was also other strange occurrences, lack of sun in some parts in the south and huge amounts of sun in Western Scotland. A completely dry month in western Scotland is unusual, it was unprecedented in February. In late March floods developed as the snow melted rapidly.

To view more photographs of the Borders Railway in Winter 1947 visit Capital Collections.

Holocaust Memorial Day 2017: How can life go on?

Holocaust Memorial DayOn 27 January we mark Holocaust Memorial Day. We remember not only the millions killed in the Holocaust under Nazi persecution, but also those who have been victims of subsequent genocides. We honour the survivors and reflect upon the lessons of their experiences to challenge hatred and persecution and to prevent future atrocities.
This year’s Holocaust Memorial Day asks the question `How can life go on?’, asking us to consider what happens after a genocide.

From Wednesday 11 – Saturday 28 January a display from library collections on the Mezzanine floor, Central Library, considers the creative response to the Holocaust and the contribution that peoples of Jewish origin have made to the cultures of the countries that they were displaced to. We explore how suffering can be channelled and expressed through art, music and writing through pieces reflecting on the Holocaust and how artists, musicians and writers emerged from their experiences, demonstrating how life can go on.

At Central Library on Friday 27 January, 2 – 3pm,  Dr Hannah Holtschneider from the University of Edinburgh is delivering a talk entitled `Holocaust Memorial Day – `How can life go on? The long way home’, reflecting on the aftermath of the Holocaust for refugees and survivors who came to Scotland.

The news of Christmas past

We’re still in the Christmas mood and have been flicking through the pages of the British Newspaper Archive, delving into Christmases past.

1918’s panto at the King’s Theatre was Jack and The Beanstalk… Oh yes it was!

Jack and The Beanstalk- 1918

5th January 1918

In 1900 there was a “Great Christmas and New Year Carnival” in the Waverley Market, which had been turned into “a veritable Fairyland” and not a big wheel or German Market in sight!

carnival

25th December 1924

In 1920 the coolest Christmas gift was a gramophone…..fast forward 96 years, and once again it’s appearing on Santa’s list.

gramophone

24th December 1920

With Christmas Day only becoming a public holiday in Scotland in 1958, most workers were lucky to get a half days holiday to celebrate….

co-op

22nd December 1924

All these ads were taken from the Edinburgh Evening News, but there are over 14 million digitised pages from more than 700 UK and Irish newspapers available on the British Newspaper Archive. You can browse for FREE in Central Library’s Edinburgh & Scottish Collection and Reference Library.

So do come and have a look yourself and use the Libraries computers to explore thousands of newspapers from 1710-1954 for FREE.