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This portrait of writer, activist, and humanist E.M. Forster was given to Conway Hall as a thank you for hosting meetings of the Gay and Lesbian Humanist Association (then known as GALHA; now LGBT Humanists). The work of Forster’s cousin Philip Whichelo, who gave it to the group, the painting was formally presented to Conway Hall by GALHA’s President Maureen Duffy in 1989, marking the group’s ten year anniversary. Formed as the Gay Humanist Group in 1979, during its first decade GALHA had stood firmly for the rights of LGBT people and the non-religious, as well as providing a vital space for social connection, support, and pride. In the years following the presentation of this portrait, Conway Hall would continue to host meetings, events, and performances organised by the group, and the painting hangs today in its Humanist Library.

Image: © Conway Hall Ethical Society

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