Royalty on the books
FORMER Private Secretary to Queen Elizabeth II Sir William Heseltine suffered a lot of anguish parting with 300 books from his personal library, but he knows they are going to a good cause.
The Claremont resident has donated the books to the Royal WA Historical Society, where he was president from 1998 to 2000, for its Giant Secondhand Book Sale this weekend.
At the height of his collection in London, Sir William had about 3000 hardcover books, as well as many paperbacks.
The books are adorned with Sir William’s library plate, which is his coat of arms that was designed for him by the College of Arms when he was serving the Queen.
Sir William selected the 300 books from his collection and Society volunteers have chosen several for auction on Saturday, April 1 at 10.30am at Society headquarters in Nedlands.
“I had my life collection of books in York and when that house sold (last year), the accommodation I was moving to couldn’t fit the books, so I had to make a hasty choice of what to keep,” Sir William said.
“It was very difficult to part with them. I suffered lots of anguish but I know they’re going to a good cause.
“My son and daughter wanted some and I gave some to a book seller in York but there were still thousands left that I offered to the Historical Society.”
The auction items include textbooks from Sir William’s days studying history at UWA, books with a royal association and some on the coup in Fiji.
People can view the auction items on Friday, March 31 from 11am-3pm and Saturday, April 1 from 8.30-10.15am.