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Heroine of the Hour 2021 – Olivia Clements

Heroine of the Hour 2021 – Olivia Clements – Book exchange – Bookseller Olivia Clements deserves commendation for setting up a free book exchange in her garden during ‘Lockup 3.0’ in Bristol.

Bookseller Olivia Clements deserves commendation for setting up a free book exchange in her garden during ‘Lockup 3.0’ in Bristol

University of York history graduate and bookseller at Waterstones (formerly Waterstone’s) and Max Minerva’s independent bookshop Olivia Clements trended on Twitter over the weekend.


In spite of just having 675 followers, a tweet by Clements on Friday touched the hearts of thousands. In it, she announced:


“I made a community library! If you’re in the Bishopston area of Bristol please feel free to visit, borrow, swap out, and enjoy some much needed escapism.”


The response to the missive was extraordinary and aside from 1,500 retweets and 13,500 likes, thoughtful and plainly kind Clements received over 330 comments including ones from Professor Michelle Ryan who’d set up a ‘free library’ just outside of Exeter.


Whilst one Mark Wicks nastily mocked this as “a really middle class thing to do with no real understanding of collection management or the role of libraries as a place maker in the local community,” unsurprisingly most celebrated this “great individual effort” in the spirit in was plainly intended.


For those living in Bristol, Olivia Clements’ book exchange can be found in Elton Road, Bishopston, BS7 and those wishing to donate books should contact her directly on Twitter.


Doing Good During Lockup – Olivia Clements shared on Twitter that she’d created a community library in the Bishopston area of Bristol on 5th February and already 13,400 pressed ‘love’ and 1,500 shared news of her generous gesture.
Doing Good During Lockup – On Saturday, Clements tweeted again with an image of the well-stocked ‘The Little Library’ and remarked: “Today’s donations for The Little Library! You guys have great taste in books.”

Five Sensible Souls of Lockup-Lockdown

Doing Good During Lockup – In March 2020, we featured the story of a “lovely gesture” by an anonymous Good Samaritan in Denchworth, Oxfordshire. Said individual paid for the local pub, The Fox, to provide fish and chips once per week for the 171 residents during the first lockdown.
Doing Good During Lockup – In March 2020, Dame Vera Lynn (20th March 1917 – 18th June 2020) told Britons to “weather the storm” of the coronavirus crisis by “pulling together.” She very correctly added: “Keep calm and follow sensible advice… Remain positive and look after each other.”
Doing Good During Lockup – In April 2020, we reported on how the 29-year-old Duke of Westminster had given £12.5 million to “provide support to NHS staff, key workers and their children and families” during the first lockdown. He remarked: ““On behalf of my family and everyone at the Grosvenor Estate, I want to say a huge thank you to all our amazing NHS staff and everyone providing critical frontline services. We are all humbled and incredibly grateful that you are working tirelessly to keep us safe and keep the country functioning.”
Doing Good During Lockup – The ‘Queen of Gorbals Gobbledygook’ Lorraine Kelly OBE quite sensibly told obese people to slim to avoid death by coronavirus in May 2020. Whilst some would suggest this cruel, the daytime presenter remarked: “This awful coronavirus is far deadlier to those who are overweight… This is not about going on a stupid faddy diet. It’s all about a lifestyle change and doing exercise you enjoy. My advice, which is hard-earned over the years, is not to have too much unhealthy food in the house, especially right now in lockdown when it’s so easy to sit watching TV while guzzling whole packets of biscuits. If you don’t buy the junk, you won’t be able to gorge on it. That’s not to say you can’t have a treat. You can. Just don’t eat a whole plus-sized bag of Maltesers or only leave a few Hobnobs in the biscuit tin.”
Doing Good During Lockup – Captain Sir Tom Moore (30th April 1920 – 2nd February 2021) undoubtedly became the figurehead of fundraising and positivity from the first lockdown onwards. Aside from raising well over £30 million, his message of “tomorrow will be a good day” inspired millions. Here he is pictured in Barbados being serenaded by singer Melinda Hughes.
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