Rare resident puzzle found in Grappenhall Library

A RESIDENT has been stunned after his search for a rare puzzle based on a photo of him and his family was found in his own village.

Since Warrington Borough Council closed the Grappenhall Library 10 years ago, it has been run by dedicated volunteers from Friends of Grappenhall Library.

As well as maintaining traditional library services, a range of additional activities, including craft sessions for children and adults and story time for toddlers, have become regular features.

Since Covid restrictions were eased, the library has reopened and included a new fundraising activity – the Puzzle Corner Club.

The club is open to all library members, where a small fee is charged to borrow a puzzle, and thanks to generous makers and puzzle enthusiasts, the library has over 200 in stock.

“Earlier this month, a man named Geoff walked into the library to buy tickets for an evening of wine tasting,” said Alan Patterson, library volunteer and driving force behind the club.

“It was her first visit since before the Covid pandemic, and during our conversation about how things were going with the library, I told her about the puzzle club.

“He asked if I could keep an eye out for an old Gibson jigsaw called ‘Holiday Hold Ups’, which showed him and his family visiting the Isle of Man for the TT race in 1963.

“His dad’s motorbike and sidecar had broken down and he was trying to fix it, and it turned out there was only gas left.”

Grappenhall Library (Image: Google Maps)

In the years that followed, a family member sent a photo of the occasion to Gibson to be turned into a puzzle.

However, the company liked it so much that they asked an artist to design a puzzle that they could produce commercially.

The family received a special framed edition of the puzzle which they auctioned off for a TT group from the Isle of Man, and Geoff had a personal copy which had unfortunately been lost.

It had been looking for a replacement for several years, but since it’s no longer in production, it’s now a fairly rare puzzle.

“As I was talking to Geoff, I realized we actually had a copy of Holiday Holdups in the puzzle club,” Alan explained.

“Geoff couldn’t believe it when I produced the puzzle and gave it to him, and he was able to point out all the people in the photo.

“As seen in the photo, Geoff is on the left by his father’s bicycle, while his father stands in the doorway of Napier Cottage.

“His mother and sister are in the garden while his older brother is working on his own bike on the right.

“We obviously made Geoff’s day, and I think we gave new meaning to the words community library.”

About Lillian Coomer

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