STORMONT’S only portrait of the Queen is among a series of royal images no longer on display at Parliament Buildings, it has emerged.
And TUV leader Jim Allister has said it is “a disgrace” that such iconic images remain “hidden away”.
The painting of the Queen by the 20th century Irish artist Lydia de Burgh is “on loan to Hillsborough Castle” while a print showing a service for Queen Victoria’s Jubilee and a photograph of Queen Victoria are “in storage”.
The only royal painting on display in Parliament Buildings is one of William III meeting the Pope by the Flemish Baroque painter Pieter Van der Meulen.
TUV leader Mr Allister, who uncovered the information after tabling an Assembly question, urged the Assembly to at least display the Queen’s portrait to mark her Diamond Jubilee this year.
Mr Allister said: “These include portraits of former Prime Ministers JM Andrews and Viscount Craigavon, as well as one of Sir Henry Wilson, who was involved in the famous Curragh Incident in March 1914 when a large number of officers at the main British military base in Ireland said they would resign or accept dismissal if ordered to enforce Home Rule on Ulster.
“Also in storage are a painting of the Obelisk which stood at the Boyne before it was blown up during the Irish Civil War in 1923, a print of the service for Queen Victoria’s Jubilee and a photograph of Queen Victoria. A portrait of HM the Queen is on loan to Hillsborough Castle.
“It is a disgrace that these important reminders of Northern Ireland’s history are hidden away in order to appease republican intolerance.
“If Stormont can find space for a sculpture venerating the Hillsborough Agreement and portraits of Ian Paisley and Seamus Mallon then surely space can be found for portraits of our first prime minister and the prime minister who lead Northern Ireland though the dark days of the Second World War.”
Mr Allister has now asked the Assembly Commission, a cross-party group of MLAs, whether it will display the Queen’s portrait.
An Assembly spokeswoman said: “It is inappropriate for the Assembly Commission to respond to media enquiries about Assembly questions which have been submitted but for which the member has not yet received an answer.”