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Len Harvey

Photo credit: National Portrait Gallery, London

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Harvey was one of the leading sportsmen in Britain during the interwar years. He was Champion of Great Britain in three different boxing categories, British Middleweight champion (1929–1933), British Light Heavyweight (1933) and Heavyweight champion (also 1933). His international career reached a peak in 1939 when an audience of 90,000 witnessed his defeat of Jock McAvoy at the White City Stadium to take the British Commonwealth and World Light Heavyweight titles. Harvey also won three Lonsdale belts.
Harvey is depicted at the peak of his celebrity in the year before he became World Light Heavyweight Champion. He is shown in a ringside robe, a towel casually round his neck, his knuckles prominent.

National Portrait Gallery, London



Len Harvey




oil on canvas


H 111.2 x W 86.5 cm

Accession number


Acquisition method

Purchased, 2008

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