Sylvia retires from Sidmouth Library

Library assistant retires from Sidmouth Library after 18 years

ANOTHER familiar face has disappeared from Sidmouth Library, with the retirement on Friday of library assistant Sylvia Werb.

Sylvia, 64, joined the library in 1994 doing casual work, covering for other staff.

“I was a secretary before that with BOAC at Heathrow,” said Sylvia, who has three sons, Justin, Matthew and James “a true Devonian”.

She and husband Peter, were keen to leave London for Devon and moved to Chard, where she worked as a doctor’s receptionist before moving to Colyton, then to Sidmouth, where they have lived since 1985, the year James was born.

Peter, who ran his own building firm, retired four years ago.

Sylvia said: “I used to run Manstone playgroup at St Francis hall and worked for a short time at Sidmouth Daycare Nursery.

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“I love books and had always wanted to work in the library.”

Last June Sylvia gained her library qualifications, becoming an associate member of the Chartered Institute of Library Professionals.

“They (Devon County Council) started re-arranging the library and the opportunity for promotion has gone. It was just bad timing, otherwise I wouldn’t have gone,” explained Sylvia, who has decided to retire a few months early before her November birthday “to enjoy the summer”.

Having also worked at Primley Library before its closure, Sylvia said: “It’s the people who come into the library I will miss. “I liked helping people look for things and find books and I like investigating things, it’s the Sherlock Holmes aspect I will miss.”

Sylvia enjoys a good historical crime novel and among her favourite authors are Edward Marston, Judith Cutler, and Deryn Lake.

Colleague Meriel Santer said of Sylvia: “She is always very calm under pressure and very professional and she loves books. “She always goes the extra mile to help readers choose books. We will miss her.”