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Tuesday, 2 January, 2001, 13:48 GMT
Lord Hamlyn: Labour's donor
Books
Labour's mystery donor is the founder of Hamlyn Publishers
The mystery donor who gave 2m to the Labour party is millionaire publisher Lord Hamlyn.

He has made regular contributions to the Labour party every year from 1996 to 1999 including a reported 500,000 sum in the run-up to the General Election in 1997.

The 74-year-old philanthropist and patron of the arts has also given substantial sums to good causes.

The charitable Paul Hamlyn Foundation, set up in 1987, has sponsored the National Theatre's discount ticket scheme which sees tickets available for as little as 1.

Lord Hamlyn
Lord Hamlyn: Patron of the arts
It has also donated at least 12,000 books to the British Museum's new reference library housed in the now-public Reading Room.

There have also been donations of 1m to the Bodleian Library in Oxford and 200,000 a year to the Royal Opera House.

Lord Hamlyn founded several publishing companies since starting Books for Pleasure in 1949.

He started the successful Hamlyn Publishing Group in 1968 and bought it back from Reed International in 1986.

Lord Hamlyn also founded Music for Pleasure in 1965 as a joint venture with EMI.

Refugee

He was a joint managing director of newspaper publishing giant News International in 1970 and 1971.

He has held numerous directorships in the world of publishing and was chairman of Heinemann Publishers between 1985 and 1997.

For six years until 1999, Lord Hamlyn was chancellor of Thames Valley University.

He was made a CBE in 1993 and given his peerage in 1998 and holds honorary literature degrees from Keele and Warwick universities.

Lord Hamlyn, who came to Britain aged six as a refugee from Nazism, has a son and daughter by his first wife, Eileen Watson.

He married Helen Guest in 1970.

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02 Jan 01 | UK Politics
Labour's 2m donor named
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