College opens submissions for renaming of the Berkeley Library

College plans to rename the library within the current academic year

College has opened submissions for suggestions on a new name for the library formerly known as the Berkeley.

Submissions will be accepted until mid-January, after which they will be reviewed by the Trinity Legacies Review Working Group (TLRWG).

College plans to rename the library within the current academic year.

The Board voted to dename the Berkeley Library in April 2023 following a campaign led by Trinity College Dublin Students’ Union (TCDSU), including a petition, protests and referring to the library as the “X Library” in all union correspondence.

College said the use of the name of the slave-owning philosopher “is inconsistent with the University’s core values of human dignity, freedom, inclusivity and equality”.

Speaking on today’s announcement, Provost Linda Doyle said: “Trinity is committed to the fundamental values of human dignity, equality, freedom, and inclusion.”

“For these reasons it is important for us to listen to as many voices as possible, as we embark on a further evidence-based review of legacy issues,” she said.

“This website offers us an important mechanism to do that.”

On renaming the library, Librarian and College Archivist Helen Shenton said: “We have an opportunity to show imagination in the renaming of this iconic library.”

“We encourage suggestions not just confined to people’s names but all sorts of options, including places, dates, concepts, and more,” she added.

TLRWG Chair Eoin O’Sullivan said the renaming of the library will be based on “evidence-led deliberations”.

“Members of the public will be asked to include in their suggestions as much detail and evidence as possible about the issue and its connection with Trinity,” he said.

College also announced it is “working on a comprehensive inventory of the nature and origin of all human remains in its historic collections” and has opened submissions for suggestions and concerns relating to this.

Last year, it returned human remains to the island of Inishbofin, which were taken without the consent of the community more than a century ago.

Ellen Kenny

Ellen Kenny is the current Deputy Editor of Trinity News and a Senior Sophister student of Politics and Sociology. She previously served as Assistant Editor and Features Editor

Conor Healy

Conor Healy is the Deputy News Editor of Trinity News and is currently in his Senior Freshman Year studying Law and Political Science