The tiles were designed and made by Charles S Allen of New Castle Delft and were installed in January 1997. The Ash wood frames were made by Studio Cabinets at Hoults Estate.
The design of the tiles for the counter is derived from two sources.
The illuminated capitals and the typeface are from a mediaeval
manuscript “The Sarum Missal” (circa 1420-30) this book is one of the treasures of The Robinson Library Special Collection; it was
selected for its historical and decorative qualities.
The text was taken from a second book in the Special Collection,
“Some Notes on Books and Printing: A Guide for Authors;
Publishers and Others” by Charles T Jacobi, published 1892. The
quote originates from a lecture (“of Kings Treasuries”) by John
Ruskin, published in his book “Sesame and Lilies”1906.
“A book is essentially not a talked thing,
but a written thing and written,
not with a view of mere communication,
but of permanence.”
This project was funded by
University of Newcastle and Arts Council Lottery fund