A woman who has inspired me
“There is no limit to what we, as women, can accomplish.” - Michelle Obama
My words to share with others
Life’s too short to let the fear of failure stop you from doing things: and the more you do, the more confident you get.
My proudest achievement
The part I played over a decade in transforming the British Library in its new building from a potential ‘white elephant’ into a great national institution, widely loved and respected here and across the world.
My thoughts on feminism and women’s suffrage
I was part of the wave of feminism in this country from 1968 onwards and felt liberated by it – I thought we had ‘won’, but if anything feminism is even more important today – the global struggle for women’s rights is far from over; in the West it is still a white man’s world; social media piles additional pressure on young women – how they look, the pressure to be liked and to conform – are very strong, often leading to mental health problems. The #Metoo campaign represents a brave fightback against the shocking levels of sexual harassment, and the unequal relationship between powerful men and young women.