Dorothy McGillivray, a resident of the Aveo Maple Grove retirement village in Casula, has recently been called ‘the ultimate book worm’ after the staff at the Liverpool Library hosted a surprise morning tea for her, being their longest-serving member. Dorothy has been a dedicated member of the library since 1952.
Liverpool Library estimates that its longest-serving member has read more than 15,000 of its books. “I practically live here”, Dorothy said. “It is my second home”. Dorothy migrated to Australia 62 years ago when the library was just a pokey little space on the corner of George and Moore Streets. “For as long as I can remember I’ve had my nose in a book,” Dorothy said. Her intellectual sharpness and love of thumbing through history books are not mutually exclusive. “I have always tried to keep my mind active by reading and doing cross-words,” she said. English history – the Plantagenet kings in particular – is her genre of choice and you won’t find a single work of fiction. “Fiction is just figments of someone else’s imagination,” she said.
Dorothy said she was not only surprised but shocked to find her family and library staff had organised the morning tea in her honour. “It is wonderful, but embarrassing somewhat,” she said. Nowadays, books are delivered to Dorothy by the library’s reader services officer, Mary Bush who has known Dorothy for almost 30 years. Dorothy also celebrated her 90th birthday on Christmas Eve.