April Ashley was born George Jamieson, in Liverpool, 1935. Although born a boy, April always felt and looked like a girl. Childhood was a lonely and traumatic time.
By her early twenties she was finally able to accept and reveal her true identity and longed to become the woman she always felt she had been. In 1960 she was one of the first people in the world to undergo pioneering gender reassignment surgery.
She later went on to become a Vogue model and an actress.
As one of the most famous transgender individuals and a tireless campaigner for transgender equality, especially in relation to the Gender Recognition Act 2004, she is an icon and inspiration to many. In 2012 she was appointed a Member of the Order of the British Empire (MBE).
This portrait was first displayed in the Museum of Liverpool during the April Ashley: Portrait of a Lady
exhibition and was presented to the Museum of Liverpool on Transgender Day of Remembrance, 2015.
*Trans/transgender – an umbrella term for people whose gender identity and/or gender expression differs from the sex they were assigned at birth.