Harry Potter: daughter ‘heartbroken’ following accidental donation of late mother’s books to charity


A whole series of sentimentally loved Harry Potter books was mistakenly donated to charity – but now a father-daughter pair is appealing to get them back.

Billy Shepherd and his 16-year-old daughter Hannah were distraught after decluttering their Dundee home, finding their collection of all seven books was missing.

The books ended up in the “to be donated” pile somehow – but that’s the last thing the two of them would have liked.

They were of great sentimental importance to the two, although they were not first editions, as they belonged to Hannah’s mother, Veronica, who died at the age of 45 of cancer.

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Both mother and daughter, as she was growing up, adored the books that Hannah treasures and have been treasured since Veronica’s death four years ago.

For Hannah, the books are so precious because her mother had left them to her.

“We used to read them together,” she explained. I certainly recall reading the Stone of the Philosopher with her, and her mother, my grandmother, used to read books, too.

“She added, “There are not enough words to tell how much getting them back will mean.

“Harry Potter was one of the big connections I had with my mom, and I felt like I lost a part of her when I found out the books were gone.”

Billy Shepherd’s father and his daughters, Hannah, 16 (right) and Leah, 18 (right) (left).

Hannah’s father, Billy, said that when they realized what had happened, they were distraught.

“He said, “For Hannah, the books were a big deal, and for her aunt, a big deal. They had a lot of sentimental value because their mother purchased those books and they both had a common interest in them.

“She didn’t keep a lot of her mum, but these in particular are very special.”

Mr Shepherd turned to social media for support with no sign of them in the shop.

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“As soon as we noticed, we went straight to the store hoping they were still in the back, but we quickly discovered that some of the other things we had donated were already gone.”

“A lot of people have been in touch after we posted it on Facebook, and we have gotten a lot of offers for replacement books – but it’s about the nostalgic value of the books, not necessarily the books themselves.

“The post, aimed at the Facebook community, reads, “Can any of my friends on Facebook support me? Did you purchase a set of paperbacks and hardcovers from Harry Potter at this week’s Cancer Research charity shop on Brook St, Broughty Ferry? It would have to be between Dec. 7 and 10.

“They were accidentally donated along with other items and Hannah is heartbroken as they were left to her by her mother,” she said.

“It’s very unlikely, but if you share this post, we might get lucky and be able to buy them back.”

Mr. Shepherd, 55, also said that he would be delighted to buy them back or try to replace them with another full collection of books by J.K. Rowling.

“Because they belonged to Hannah’s mother, we want them back.”


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