You see I’ve always enjoyed LS Lowry’s work and away from the most popular of his works, the stuff you see in Ikea and on chocolate box lids, the best of his work is in the museum dedicated to him at The Lowry Centre in Salford, particularly the dull old paintings done on old scraps of brown paper, its a unique style.
I knew I always liked his work but something else emerged the other day that endeared me to him even more.
LS Lowry turned down an honour from HM The Queen.
ON FIVE OCCASIONS.
What a man, my hat is raised in his honour.
I love the idea of Betty sitting in the palace, blank sheet of monogrammed paper in front of her, expression screwed in concentration, sucking the end of a pencil, “I’ll put LS Lowry on the list again I think” she mutters as she draws up her six monthly honours list, “what was it we offered him the last time, an OBE was it, well we’ll up it to a CBE this time…”
And he opens the envelope in his modest little home in Salford, reads the header, mutters “Oh for fooks sake” and screws it up and throws it in the bin.
He turned down,
An OBE in 1955
A CBE in 1961
A Knighthood in 1968
And a Companion of Honour in 1972 and again in 1976.
His reason ?
“I don’t want to change my situation”
What a bloke.
And just in case you were wondering Ma’am (rhymes with ham), I don’t want one either, just in case.