Ray Verrills collection

The Ray Verrills Collection is a research collection that was donated to Victoria University Library.

The collection of books, journals and pamphlets was compiled by Ray Verrills and left in his will to Neville and Dawn Heffernan, who then donated the collection to Victoria University.


Who was Ray Verrills?

Ray Verrills (1915-1999) over a lifetime, collected primary and critical material related to Australian Literature, and left-wing politics and philosophy in Australia and Overseas.

In the 1920s and 1930s he completed two degrees at the University of Sydney, a Bachelor of Arts and a Bachelor of Commerce. Ray Verrills was involved with the Australian Communist Party from the 1940s onwards and the Realist Writers group from the 1960s onwards. In the 1970s he was the editor of the Realist Writer journal. He also worked as a senior Commonwealth public servant but his main passion was collecting the over 9000 books that make up the Verrills collection.

The subject coverage of the collection includes:

  • Australian fiction (novels, plays and poetry)
  • Classical and European Literature
  • Soviet Literature
  • Socialist Economics
  • European Philosophy
  • Foreign Languages
  • Australian Politics and Sociology.

Further information regarding the Verrills collection can be viewed on the VU Special Collections - How to access and use guide.


Access to the collection

The Verrills collection is a research collection. The items can't be borrowed, but may be viewed on appointment.

In the library catalogue, these items have the prefix FTS VERRILL COLL. before the shelf number.

To access material in the collection, please email our Special Collections librarians. You will receive an emailed response within five working days (Mon-Fri) and a suitable time will be arranged.

You can view the items in the Special Collections reading room on level 4 of the Footscray Park campus library.

Email: [email protected] .