Intended for healthcare professionals


Jill Parker

BMJ 2010; 340 doi: (Published 07 April 2010) Cite this as: BMJ 2010;340:c1822
  1. Wendy Moore

    General practitioner, staunch believer in the NHS, London socialite, and gardener

    As a busy society hostess who was married to the industrialist Sir Peter Parker, a mother of four children and a keen gardener, Lady Jill Parker might have been forgiven for abandoning her youthful ambitions in medicine. But Parker, who died on 11 March aged 85, was also a general practitioner in London who was devoted to the principle of individual care.

    A staunch supporter of the NHS and admirer of Aneurin Bevan, like her husband, who was chairman of British Rail from 1976 to 1983, she maintained a firm conviction in public service throughout her life.

    Fascination with Marie Curie

    Born in London in 1925, Gillian Rowe-Dutton, who was always known as Jill, was the youngest daughter of Sir Ernest Rowe-Dutton, a high ranking civil servant in the Treasury. Staying in London while her father worked in Paris and Berlin, she went to St Paul’s Girls’ School, where a passion for literature inspired her to hide in a tree to spy on a visit by W B Yeats. But a fascination with Marie Curie triggered an …

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