Tessa Ransford, British poet, died at 77

  Dead Famous

Tessa Ransford, born in India in 1938 and moved to Britain in 1944 and to Scotland at the age of 10, died on September 2, 2015 of cancer, she was a British poet.

Scots Makar Liz Lochhead said: “Poets and lovers of poetry in Scotland will be very saddened to hear of the death of Tessa Ransford.”

She added: “A fine poet of great sensitivity herself, she was the prime mover behind the establishing of the Scottish Poetry Library in Edinburgh – which dedicated library supports all kinds of poetry, serving poets, spoken-word artists, scholars of poetry, students, readers, and enthusiasts all over the world.

The Scottish Poetry Library was founded in 1984 by the poet Tessa Ransford.

It originally had two staff members, including Scottish poet, Tom Hubbard, and 300 books, but has since expanded considerably to containing 30,000 items of Scottish and international poetry.

The library contains material in Scotland’s three indigenous languages: Scottish Gaelic, Lowland Scots, and English.

The library is involved in Scotland’s Virtual reference scheme, Ask Scotland, where users can ‘Ask an Expert’ online.

Reference questions posed via the Ask Scotland website can be referred to a member of staff at the Scottish Poetry Library.

This service has been available since 2011. In 2008 Ryan Van Winkle began a three-year run as the first Reader in Residence at the library.

999, the library has been based in Crichton’s Close, just off the Canongate in Edinburgh’s Old Town.

The library building was designed by Malcolm Fraser Architects, and was shortlisted for Channel 4’s “Building of the Year” in 2000.

It has been described as “a poem in glass and stone”, and was included in Prospect magazine’s list of the 100 best modern Scottish buildings.