Angela Countess of Limerick

Angela Countess of Limerick

Angela Countess of Limerick served as Chairwoman of the Standing Commission from October 1965 until November 1973, when she retired after having been re-elected as Chairwomen in September 1969. The Countess of Limerick first joined the Movement in 1915 as a Nurse working for the British Red Cross and her outstanding Red Cross career would ultimately span 61 years.

Angela, née Trotter, spent her early childhood in Romania. During World War I, she worked as a Red Cross Voluntary Aid Detachment nurse in military hospitals in England and France. Between the wars she studied for a diploma in Social Science at the London School of Economics, married the subsequent 5th Earl of Limerick and expanded her Red Cross, local government and social work. From 1934 until 1940, she was President of the London Branch of the British Red Cross. During World War II Angela was in charge of Red Cross services throughout London during the “blitz” and from 1942 was also deputy chairman of the Executive Committee of the War Organization of the British Red Cross Society (BRCS) and the Order of St. John of Jerusalem. In 1944-45 she toured the War Organization’s Commissions in the Middle East and Italy and inspected relief work, visiting 17 countries.[1] Post war, 1946-63 Angela was a Vice-Chairman of the BRCS’s Executive Committee and a leading figure at the 1946 meeting in Oxford of the League of Red Cross Societies. She visited most of the BRCS Overseas Branches in Africa, the Far East and the Caribbean and a large number of National Societies. She was widely respected for her uncompromising support of the integrity of the Movement and its fundamental principles. In 1948, she was elected as the Vice-President of the British Red Cross Society and one of the Governors of the League of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies.[2] Angela was a valuable member of the Joint Committee for the Re-Appraisal of the Role of the Red Cross 1972-75, chaired by Donald Tansley. She also chaired the Council of the BRCS from 1974-76 and, on retiring, she was appointed a Vice-President.[3]

Angela was known for her wide vision and gave encouragement and inspiration to many people. The Times of London said in her obituary: “Angela Limerick had a great breadth of vision, an astonishing memory and grasp of detail, and a remarkable ability to establish close and lasting personal relationships after brief acquaintance; above all she had the gift of inspiring and encouraging others and bringing out the best in them.”[4] She received numerous awards, including a G.B.E. and a C.H., and in 1975 she received the Henry Dunant medal. The Countess of Limerick was born in 1897 and died in 1981.[5]

[1] British Red Cross

[2] Standing Commission

[3] British Red Cross


[5] Standing Commission