Dame Lynne Brindley

lynne brindley




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.


Dame Lynne Brindley is Master of Pembroke College, Oxford. She took up the position in August 2013. Before that she was Chief Executive of the British Library from 2000 - 2012. Lynne came to the British Library from the University of Leeds where she was Pro-Vice-Chancellor. Previously she was a senior consultant with KPMG and has held leadership positions in information technology and knowledge management at Aston University and at the London School of Economics.

She is a non-exec Board member of Ofcom, the UK media and telecommunications regulator. She is a member of the Council of City University, on the Court of the Goldsmiths' Livery Company, and sits on the Wolfson Trust Arts Panel. She was a council member of the Arts & Humanities Research Council (AHRC) from 2009-2014.

Dame Lynne Brindley started her professional career at Oxford University's Bodleian Library after studying music at the University of Reading. She gained a Masters Degree in Information Science from the University of London. She played a leading role in modernising national library and information provision across UK higher education and was made a Dame Commander of the Order of the British Empire in the 2008 New Year's Honours List for services to education.

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.