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The Bobby Irvine Memorial Library

Bobby Irvine (1920-2002) was a popular and widely respected President of the BGS. The Society’s newsletter of March 2003 contained extensive appreciations of his achievements. Among his many qualities was his interest in the Society, recording its history and documenting the lives of past members.  It was therefore very right that the BGS library should be named after him.

The library is located in the basement of the offices of the British Geriatrics Society at Marjory Warren House in London’s St John’s Square. Advice on its maintenance and upkeep was obtained following a visit from a representative of the National Archives in 2010. The contents have since been re-organised to concentrate on UK developments in the care of older people. When finances allow, it is hoped that some material will be moved to the ground floor where it will be displayed in appropriate shelving and the current card index of books will be made available on the web.

What is available in the library?  

  • BGS records from the beginning.  These include minutes of council, executive and treasurer’s meetings, membership lists, newsletters and accounts of regional meetings. BGS Scotland seems particularly active in this respect.    
  • BGS members.  There is wealth of material about early members in the ‘Hall of Fame’, including Trevor Howell’s unpublished autobiography.  Unfortunately, we lack input from current members who only need to complete a form.  This information makes life much easier if and when we have to write about you! 
  • Donated papers and publications of past/current members, including amongst others, Lord Amulree, George Adams, John Brocklehurst, Trevor Howell and Booby Irvine.  We now have many textbooks on geriatric medicine!
  • Official papers and documents from the Department of Health and others.
  • Back copies of Gerontologia Clinica and Age and Ageing 
  • A large range of books either written by members or donated by them from their own collection
  • An excellent selection of photographs: mainly of members rather than events  
  • And, of course, there is much material on the Society’s archive website.

Members of the Society who wish to visit the library are welcome to do so. Please contact the BGS Committee and Membership manager, on 020 7608 8575 or by email:


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