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News > School News > Penny Giddings, Dame Allan's Librarian, retires after 22 years

Penny Giddings, Dame Allan's Librarian, retires after 22 years

We chat to Penny Giddings as she embarks on her retirement about her time at Dame Allan's and her plans for the future.
Penny Giddings, librarian at Dame Allan's for 22 years, has retired
Penny Giddings, librarian at Dame Allan's for 22 years, has retired

AFTER more than 22 years sharing her knowledge and love of literature with pupils, experienced librarian Penny Giddings has retired from Dame Allan’s Schools. 

Penny joined the Schools in February 2000 and was instrumental in cataloguing all books onto the library’s electronic system.

She worked at both the Junior School and Senior School sites, and helped with the amalgamation of the DABS and DAGS libraries in 2007. She also regularly encouraged pupils to enter national reading competitions. Day to day, Penny interacted with pupils to encourage a love of reading: helping them to select books and playing the “reading game” during their library time to introduce them to new genres of books they may not have considered.

She said: “I will miss the pupils very much; there’s no greater job satisfaction than a child asking for your help to choose a book and then coming back, having read one, to rave about how much they enjoyed it.

“My advice to all pupils would be: learn to love reading for pleasure, because there’s nothing better than being absorbed in a good book! Those who read for pleasure are boosting their academic learning and mental wellbeing without even realising it; books are packed full of interesting facts and knowledge.”

Each year, Penny has entered teams of pupils into the Kids’ Lit Quiz, an international, annual literature competition, and more recently the National Literacy Trust’s National Reading Champions Quiz (NRCQ). Last year, Dame Allan’s won the regional heats of the NRCQ and made it through to the national finals. 

Speaking about her retirement, Penny, who worked at a university library prior to joining Dame Allan’s, added: “I’m certainly ready to retire. I’d like to travel and I’ve got hundreds of books that I haven’t had time to read… until now!”

Penny is also looking forward to going for walks with her new rescue dog, Max, and having more time for her hobby, beekeeping. 

Listen to Penny tell us about her career at Dame Allan’s and her plans for retirement here.


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