National Trust and Stephen Fry under fire for ‘outing’ historical figure

Illustrated rainbow pride flag on a pink background.

Descendants of a gay nobleman have lashed out at the National Trust for featuring him in an LGBT history campaign.

The Trust has been delving into Britain’s gay history as part of its year-long ‘Prejudice & Pride’ programme to mark 50 years since the partial decriminalisation of homosexuality.

Prominent LGBT figures including Clare Balding and Stephen Fry have been involved in the campaign, with Fry narrating a short film earlier this month telling the story of Robert Wyndham Ketton-Cremer, a Justice of the Peace and the former squire of National Trust property Felbrigg Hall.

National Trust and Stephen Fry under fire for ‘outing’ historical figure

Fry’s powerful short film, The Unfinished Portrait, explains that although many records and accounts acknowledged the scholar’s homosexuality, it was airbrushed out of history and not mentioned to visitors to the Hall.

The clip explains that Wyndham Ketton-Cremer – known as ‘Bunny’ to his friends – was responsible for “restoring his exquisite ancestral home and bequeathing it to the nation” in the early 20th century.

Fry explained: “Official accounts of Robert’s life tend to offer only a partial story, and neglect to incorporate what was widely accepted by those who knew him. The truth is, when researching Robert’s life, we find many accounts that openly acknowledge his homosexuality.

“Of course, to be gay when he lived could lead to prosecution under the law.”

However, the use of the public figure in the campaign has angered some of his descendants

According to the Daily Mail, Wyndham Ketton-Cremer’s godsons have attacked the film, accusing it of ‘outing’ the historical figure.

E C Coryton Saltash wrote: “Wyndham, who was my godfather, was an intelligent, charming man who dedicated much of his life to Norfolk.

Comments (0)

MyPinkNews members are invited to comment on articles to discuss the content we publish, or debate issues more generally. Please familiarise yourself with our community guidelines to ensure that our community remains a safe and inclusive space for all.

Loading Comments