- Category: Art
Has Lord Doverdale been moved to Buxton from his spiritual home in Glossop? Only HPBC know the answer, and they are not telling! A valuable portrait of Lord Doverdale, AKA Edward Partington, that used to hang in the Mayor’s Parlour in the Municipal Buildings until at least 1973, has been removed from Glossop Town Hall and taken to a secret location, believed to be Buxton.
High Peak Borough Council rejected a freedom of information request for its location on the grounds that “if the location of the painting was known this could lead to theft which may affect the cost of the Council’s insurance premium. The Council has a duty to protect the public purse, therefore, the public interest in maintaining the exemption outweighs the public interest in releasing the information”. We wrote to the council saying that we were not interested in stealing the picture and only wanted to know if it was in Buxton or Glossop, but they did
not reply. We wrote again, on 16th August, 9th October and 19th October asking the same question, but High Peak Borough Council are saying nowt. Surely that means it must be in Buxton?
Everything that we managed to squeeze out of High Peak Borough Council about one of Glossop’s most valuable works of art is below.
Freedom of Information Request to HPBC re. Portrait of Lord Doverdale
Question 1:- The date of removal and building it was removed from.
Answer:- Early 2010, Glossop Town Hall.
Question 2:- The name of the artist (if known), the title of the work (if known)and its provenance (if known)
Answer – The artist is possibly John Sargent although the painting is unsigned and the identity of the artist remains open to question. The title of the work is, “Lord Doverdale.” The painting was gifted to the Council in Nov 1950 by Mrs M W Robinson who was the grand daughter of Sir Edward Partington, first Lord Doverdale.
Question 3:- Details of any valuation and declared value for insurance purposes.
It has a declared, although provisional valuation for insurance purposes, of £120,000.
Question 4:- Its current location
Answer – The painting is not currently on public display although held in a secure location within the Borough. The Council has been advised by its insurers that they would prefer its precise location not to be disclosed to members of the public because of potential concerns regarding safety and security. The Council considers the release of the current location to be exempt under Section 43 of the Freedom of Information Act 2000. If the location of the painting was known this could lead to theft which may affect the cost of the Council’s insurance premium. The Council has a duty to protect the public purse, therefore, the public interest in maintaining the exemption outweighs the public interest in releasing the information.