Anne Muriel Lupton, MBE

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Anne Muriel Lupton, MBE

Also Known As: "Annie"
Birthplace: Potternewton, West Yorkshire, England, United Kingdom
Death: 1967 (78-79)
Kensington, Greater London, England, United Kingdom
Immediate Family:

Daughter of Francis Martineau Lupton and Harriet Albina Lupton
Sister of Olive Christiana Middleton; Maj. Francis Ashford Lupton; Capt. Maurice Lupton and Lt. Lionel Martineau Lupton

Managed by: Private User
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Immediate Family

About Anne Muriel Lupton, MBE

Anne Lupton wanted to enter the family business, but women were excluded, so after the war she travelled abroad. She never married, but on her return to England, she set up a home in Chelsea with Enid Moberly Bell, a sort of Boston marriage.

Anne was awarded an MBE for her work to improve housing conditions for the disadvantaged. She was instrumental in creating the Quarry Hill estate in inner-city Leeds, the country’s largest municipal housing scheme, which opened in 1938 to replace the back-to-back housing of the Victorian era, a cause that had been close to her father’s heart.

The daughter and biographer of The Times editor Charles Frederic Moberly Bell, Enid was vice-chair (to Lady Frances Balfour, former president of the National Society for Women's Suffrage) of the Lyceum Club for female artists and writers.[26] Enid was also second mistress at Lady Margaret School in nearby Parsons Green, and in 1937 Anne financed the purchase of one of the Georgian properties, Elm House, in which the school is located.

Enid Moberly Bell wrote The Life and Letters of C. F. Moberly Bell (1927) and several other books, including biographies of Flora Shaw, Octavia Hill and Josephine Butler. Enid was second mistress at Lady Margaret School in Parsons Green, and vice-chair (to Lady Lady Frances Balfour, former president of the National Society for Women's Suffrage) of the Lyceum Club for female artists and writers.She set up a home in Chelsea with Anne Lupton, a sort of Boston marriage.

"Did this bohemian aunt who lived with a woman help pay Kate’s school fees?


Philanthropist: Anne Lupton

A wealthy heiress who lived with another woman among the artists of bohemian Chelsea could have played a vital part in the shaping of a future Queen.

Early feminist Anne Lupton was Kate Middleton’s great-aunt, and set up a trust for the education of her descendants.

It is not known if Kate benefited directly from this legacy, but it may explain how her parents afforded the £29,000-a-year fees to educate her at Marlborough College.

Miss Lupton was a free-spirited figure even among the avant-garde residents of Old Chelsea, where she lived from the Twenties until her death in 1967.

She shared a house in Mallord Street, now worth £4 million, with another forward-thinking spinster, Enid Moberly-Bell. Artistic neighbours included A. A. Milne, Gracie Fields and Augustus John – a flamboyant portraitist known for his sexual appetite.

Miss Lupton was an advocate of women’s liberation long before the term was first coined, as was her companion, the Egyptian-born daughter of a former managing director of The Times, Charles Frederick Moberly-Bell.

Miss Moberly-Bell was the headmistress of Lady Margaret School for Girls in nearby Parsons Green, and Miss Lupton was one of the school’s major benefactors.

As well as a biography of her father, Miss Moberly-Bell also wrote books about Victorian feminist Josephine Butler, who was concerned with the welfare of prostitutes, social reformer Octavia Hill, and ‘the rise of the woman doctor’.

It is unclear if Miss Lupton pursued a career. Both women travelled widely, in South America and Canada in particular.

Retired barrister James Buxton, Miss Moberly-Bell’s great-nephew, recalls visiting Mallord Street as a child. ‘Enid and Anne were august figures, both very industrious,’ he said. ‘They were great friends. They were ahead of their time.’

When she arrived in Chelsea in her late 20s, Miss Lupton was already a rich woman, the granddaughter of cloth merchant Frank Lupton. In 1884, he left £64,650 – the equivalent of £33 million today – to his four sons. One of them was Francis – the father of Anne, her sister Olive and three brothers.

Francis set up two trust funds in 1909 for his descendants, thought to be worth several million pounds in today’s money.

His sons were all killed in World War One, apparently childless. So Olive and Anne were the sole beneficiaries of both the trust and the £70,538 he left in his will in 1921 – equivalent to £10 million today. As Anne never married or had children, her share passed to Olive’s children. One of them was Kate’s grandfather, Peter Middleton, who could have used this to fund his own family’s education.

When Miss Moberly-Bell died in April 1967 she bequeathed her belongings to Miss Lupton, who died only eight months later.

Births Dec 1888

LUPTON Anne Muriel Leeds 9b 567

Deaths Dec 1967


References and Sources

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Anne Muriel Lupton, MBE's Timeline

West Yorkshire, England, United Kingdom
Age 79
Greater London, England, United Kingdom