Queen Mother picture frame turns up 67 years later

The frame of a long lost portrait of the late Queen Mother has been discovered.

The portrait’s frame was found at Hospitalfield House arts centre in Arbroath, Scotland, more than 67 years after it went missing. The painting by Australian artist James Quinn, now thought to be worth UKP25,000, was removed from Arbroath Art Gallery and taken to Hospitalfield House for safekeeping during World War II.

It features the late Queen Mother in an evening gown and holding a fan.

Angus Councillor Jim Millar said: “In a strange twist to the tale, the original frame of the painting has been uncovered at Hospitalfield House and returned to the council, although the painting itself remains elusive.

“Local theories put forward regarding the painting’s fate include a suggestion that a hard-up art student may have painted over it, but perhaps the most intriguing tale is that of a bonfire in the 70s in which several paintings and frames thought to be damaged by damp were destroyed.

“This may be plausible but another suggestion is that the story was made up to cover the removal of several works of art and that the portrait of the Queen Mother remains intact in the local area.”

The portrait is believed to have been donated to Arbroath Art Gallery in 1936.