max temp: 16°C

min temp: 15°C


Suffolk: Tate ordered to return John Constable painting ‘looted’ by the Nazis from Hungary in Second World War

11:09 28 March 2014

John Constable (1776-1837): Beaching a Boat, Brighton (1824). Picture: TATE GALLERY.

John Constable (1776-1837): Beaching a Boat, Brighton (1824). Picture: TATE GALLERY.


The Tate has agreed to return an oil painting by John Constable after it emerged it was probably stolen from its owner by the Nazis and smuggled out of war-time Hungary.


A committee of government-appointed experts said the “likelihood” was the 1824 work, called Beaching A Boat, Brighton, has been “looted by the Germans in 1944 or early 1945”.

Their report found the Tate had “a moral obligation” to return the painting to the family of the original owner who died in 1958 having fled the Communist takeover of his country.

It said the man, who it did not name, was “a well-known Hungarian artist and connoisseur” from a Jewish background and described how he fled the 1944 Nazi invasion and “went into hiding”.

The panel said: “His properties were confiscated, and contemporary witness accounts noted German military trucks being loaded with effects from the castle and being driven away.”

The painting turned up in London in 1962 and went through several hands before being donated to the Tate in 1986.

A Tate spokeswoman said: “Following the publication of a report of the Spoliation Advisory Panel in respect of an oil painting by John Constable, Beaching A Boat, Brighton 1824, in the Tate collection, Tate can confirm that the Panel has recommended that this painting should be returned by Tate to the claimants.

“Tate acknowledged the claim and welcomed the suggestion that the case should be presented for consideration by the Spoliation Advisory Panel as the body that was established by Government to advise on the merits of such claims. Tate is grateful for the care with which the Panel has examined the evidence and is pleased to follow the conclusions of the report. Tate will therefore recommend to its trustees, when they next meet in May, that the work be returned to the claimants. Tate will continue to respect the wishes of the claimants to remain anonymous.”



Dan Poulter with employees at B&Q

A Suffolk MP has said he will do what he can to try and prevent a B&Q store closing down with the potential loss of around 100 jobs.

Rod Kiddell

Rod Kiddell, former editor of the EADT and Evening Star, died recently, aged 72. Today, his son Tim Kiddell, and former colleagues, pay tribute to him.

Police are hunting for three man after a man was stabbed in the chest in Ipswich last night.

Children's mental health problems are increasing in Suffolk. PA/PA Wire

A worrying increase in the need for mental health treatment in Suffolk was revealed on Saturday. But what is behind this rise?

Bury Magistrates Court.

Only a few days remain for people to object to government proposals to cut the number of magistrates’ courts in Suffolk.

Dr Daniel Poulter MP

Former health minister Dan Poulter had accused the Government of imposing excessive working hours and compromising patient safety with its new junior doctor contracts.

Abellio Greater Anglia

Trains running between Essex and Suffolk and the capital face delays, alterations and cancellations this morning due to a defective piece of track at Harold Wood.

Abellio Greater Anglia

Rail operators hope to reopen blocked lines at Needham Market, closed after a body was found on the tracks close to the railway station, in the next 25 minutes.

Ipswich mayor Glen Chisholm has a largely ceremonial role - but could Suffolk and Norfolk have an executive mayor in future?

There will be no meaningful devolution in East Anglian without a directly-elected mayor for Suffolk and Norfolk.

Groton Church north aisle - lead partly stripped

A Suffolk church has become the ninth in recent weeks to be targeted by lead thieves.

Most read

Most commented

Topic pages