Richard Peters Library

When Peters moved to a nursing home in his eighties, he donated his personal library to the PESGB. His neighbour Dr Ruth Cigman agreed to house as much of his library as she could – roughly 1000 – on behalf of the Society.

In 2021 the collection found a new home at Liverpool Hope University, to which his partner’s daughter, Helen Killick, donated a further trove of correspondence and photographs. The Peters library includes preparation for a book on Wordsworth, draft papers on Psychoanalysis, twelve handwritten notebooks, including notes on the justification of education, audio recordings of Peters’ lectures, scholarly and personal correspondence, around 1000 books, and a medal from the National Academy of Education 1965. It also houses several inscribed first edition volumes presented to Peters by, among others, Michael Oakeshott, Israel Scheffler and Paul Hirst.

Peters’ notebooks, lecture recordings, and inscribed gifts are housed in Hope’s Archives & Special Collections (A&SC). The main book collection will be kept as a discreet collection, accessible to all, in the Silent Study Space in the Sheppard-Worlock Library. They are currently shelved next to the Talbot Library at the far end of The Sheppard-Worlock Library. 

In the time ahead Liverpool Hope plans to seek funding for professional archiving and digitization to enhance its public availability. In particular it will be excited to make podcasts of his lectures available online! It also plans to hold an event to launch the collection. Peters’ library is available for access by appointment, please contact the Special Collections Librarian,, to arrange a visit. Once catalogued and archived, the contents will be made public and interested parties will be able to request scans of its contents (subject to data protection and copyright restrictions) from the Special Collections Librarian.

A blurb about the collection can be read on Liverpool Hope University’s Special Collections webpage under ‘Archives: M-W tab’, and a list of content house in the A&SC is available under ‘Finding Aids’. A list of books in the collection is also available.