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Book collection of late ‘icon and trailblazer’ of women’s education, Prof. Lalage Bown, set to come under hammer in September…

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When Lalage Bown passed away at the age of 94 last December in her beloved Shrewsbury, tributes flowed to a life dedicated to the global advancement of adult education – especially that of women.
 
Her work in Africa spanned 30 years and saw her named ‘Mother of Adult Education in Africa’ in celebration of her 70th birthday; one of countless accolades bestowed over her long career which also saw her write – or contribute to – numerous books and articles on her specialism. 
 
Unsurprisingly for an academic of such stature, Bown amassed a significant collection of books – and this part of her legacy is set to go under the hammer at Cuttlestones’ Wolverhampton Auction Rooms on Thursday 15th September.
 
The collection, which comprises an estimated 8,000 volumes, includes – as one would expect – a large number of academic texts and papers, but also reflects Lalage’s voracious appetite for reading for pleasure. Alongside subjects linked to her academic specialism, such as community education, lifelong learning and adult literacy are tomes of poetry, literature, politics and biographies of fascinating individuals who made great achievements in their lives. 
There are also books on history, travel and topography – including many linked to her adopted hometown of Shrewsbury and the surrounding area, where she spent her latter years. Other lots include books of African and feminist interest, many with personal dedications to her, and a quantity of modern fiction including crime and award-winning novels.
 
Cuttlestones’ book expert, Rosie Blackburn, says:
“Lalage was a fascinating character and her achievements in advancing adult education – both at home and abroad – mean that she’s held in incredibly high esteem in academic circles. She was also a well-loved member of the community in Shrewsbury, so as well as academics working in her field, general bibliophiles and those with a keen interest in the Shrewsbury area, we anticipate strong local interest from those keen to acquire a memento of the life of a truly remarkable woman.”
 
The book collection of Lalage Bown will go under the hammer during Cuttlestones’ Specialist Collectors' Sale on the afternoon of Thursday 15th September at Wolverhampton Auction Rooms. Live online, commission and telephone bidding options are available and the catalogue will be online from Friday 9th September 2022 at www.cuttlestones.co.uk 
 
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