Baroness Trumpington (1922-2018)

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27 November 2018

Baroness Trumpington, who served on the House of Lords Works of Art Committee between 1983 and 2010, died yesterday. She was 96.

During the Second World War, Lady Trumpington - who was fluent in French, German and Italian - worked as a cypher clerk for naval intelligence at Bletchley Park.

Before entering Parliament, she served as a councillor in Cambridge and was the city's mayor in 1971-72.

Lady Trumpington entered the House of Lords as a Conservative Peer in 1980.

During her long parliamentary career, she served as a health minister in Margaret Thatcher's government and as a Conservative Whip.

She attended debates in the Lords every day until her retirement last year at the age of 95.

Lady Trumpington and the Parliamentary Art Collection 

Lady Trumpington was an active and popular member of the House of Lords Works of Art Committee who donated several works to the Parliamentary Art Collection.

She was also among the Life Peers photographed by Desiree Pfeiffer as part of a project to mark the 50th anniversary of the passing of the Life Peerages Act 1958. The resulting portrait photograph, in which she sits in a room in the former Lord Chancellor's residence in the House of Lords, is illustrated above.

One important legacy of Baroness Trumpington's interest in, and passion for, the Parliamentary Art Collection is the ongoing project to conserve Daniel Maclise's vast wall paintings in the Royal Gallery depicting the battles of Trafalgar and Waterloo.

This important project was instigated by a question about the paintings' condition and appearance that Lady Trumpington asked on the floor of the Lords Chamber in 2010.

The conservation of Maclise's paintings is due for completion at the end of 2019. It is sad that Lady Trumpington will not be able to witness the culmination of the project that she prompted and took a great interest in.

Image: Detail of 'Baroness Trumpington' by Desiree Pfeiffer, photographer, 2008 (Parliamentary Art Collection, WOA 6919)

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Works of Art Advisory Panel (Lords)

The Works of Art Advisory Panel considers matters relating to works of art and artistic heritage