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Lindisfarne Gospels

Volume 406: debated on Wednesday 11 June 2003

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To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport what discussions she has had with the British Library about the number of facsimile copies of the Lindisfarne gospels that have been produced; whether copies of the gospels of the type given by the Library to Durham Cathedral and to Lindisfarne are available for purchase commercially; and if she will make a statement. [117315]

The production and distribution of facsimile copies of the Lindisfarne Gospels is a matter for the British Library and the publisher. It is not therefore an issue about which my right hon. Friend the Secretary of State has had discussions. However, we understand that the publisher has made 980 copies available for sale. This will help to recoup the substantial investment in the development of the facsimile and, to the extent that copies are purchased by other libraries, will help to make them available more widely.