‌A new research library has been named after former University Principal, Professor Louise Richardson.

The University of St Andrews bought the vacant Martyrs Kirk from the Church of Scotland in 2012 and preserved and re-fitted the building as a Research Library and Special Collections Reading Room.

Professor Richardson, now Vice-Chancellor at the University of Oxford, helped push for the acquisition of Martyrs Kirk during her time in St Andrews.

The building now offers two reading rooms, a seminar room, over 5000 volumes of research materials and 68 study seats.

The Martyrs project was commended in the Scottish Civic Trust My Place Awards 2015 for its “sensitivity and respect” to the architecture and the building’s former purpose and traditions.

The development was named in honour of the former principal at the request of the Carnegie Corporation which made major donations to the project in support of Special Collections.

Other major benefactors who helped fund the project were The Northwood Charitable Trust, Michael Buchanan, Wendy and George David, Louise Richardson and Thomas Jevon, Sir Ewan and Lady Catherine Brown, Ian, Catherine and Lucy Ferguson, The Dunhill Links Foundation and The Binks Trust.

The Richardson Research Library at Martyrs Kirk was formally dedicated in a ceremony attended by Professor Richardson and her husband, Dr Thomas Jevon, in St Andrews last Thursday (23 June).

Professor Richardson said she was proud and honoured to be associated with the Martyrs project.

“St Andrews is more than capable of attracting the very best graduate students in the world, and there is no greater demonstration of its commitment to graduate study than this wonderful building,” she said.

As a former Principal, Professor Richardson was also bestowed with an honorary degree during graduation in Younger Hall.

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