Plaque honours famous writer
HONOUR: Gill Graham (Section Head Libraries and Museums), Alan Davies (author) and Allan Gordon (Reader Development Librarian)
A MEMORIAL to one of the area's most famous residents has been unveiled this week..
The honour marks the accomplishments of A J Cronin, the man who created the Dr Findlay stories and wrote many bestsellers, including The Citadel.
Although born in Cardross, Cronin was to retain a life-long affection for Dumbarton.
In 1972, when writing to a local teacher, he said, "Although I have travelled the world over I must say in all sincerity that my heart belongs to Dumbarton".
There is also a framed typewritten letter hanging in the foyer of the Dumbarton FC's stadium.
Written in 1972 and addressed to the club's then secretary, Cronin congratulates Dumbarton on their return to the top division after an absence of 50 years and recalls his childhood supporting the Sons and on occasion being "lifted over" the turnstiles.
He conducted the research for his first book Hatter's Castle in Dumbarton Library and West Dunbartonshire Libraries felt that both Cronin's contribution to the locality and his own links with Dumbarton Library needed to be marked in a special way.
As part of the annual Booked festival, a plaque was unveiled by Cronin's biographer Alan Davies, author of A. J. Cronin: The Man Who Created Dr Finlay, who also gave a fascinating talk on the life of this remarkable man to a capacity audience.
He said: "Cronin's influence was so great that it is no exaggeration to say that The Citadel played no small part in helping to bring about the creation of the NHS."
Gill Graham, the Section Head of West Dunbartonshire Libraries and Museums added: "I am delighted that we are acknowledging this eminent author and recognising his strong links with Dumbarton, and in particular with Dumbarton Library, which was the source of much of his research.
"The plaque commemorating A J Cronin has pride of place in the library and reminds us of the town's rich cultural heritage".
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