Jeremy Irons contributes to the Lifelines Project

Poster advertising an exhibition at the National Library of Ireland celebrating the Lifelines Project at Wesley College, Dublin. Starting in 1985, pupils of the school wrote to famous people from all walks of life (some of whom are depicted on this poster) asking them to name their favourite poem, and what it meant to them. Four booklets were published, and were sold to raise money to aid famine relief in Africa.

Four very successful Lifelines books have been published since 1992, most recently a new and collected edition in 2006. By that date, royalties had raised over €100,000 for the Irish charity Concern, to fund aid work in the developing world.

The National Library of Ireland purchased the original letters that were included in Lifelines 1 and the money was donated to Concern. Wesley College has since donated all correspondence, photographs and other related archival material to the Library. The Discover Lifelines exhibition was launched in February 2010 by Graham Norton (unsurprisingly one of the most hilarious launches ever), and the exhibition will continue throughout 2010 in our main hall, displaying letters in the Lifelines archive from writers, poets, actors, artists, media personalities and politicians. Hundreds of our visitors since February have filled in cards naming their favourite poem, and why they love it.

Date: 2010

NLI Ref.: EPH NLI/2010 (A2 size)

Reproduction rights owned by the National Library of Ireland