Names on the buses

53 Helena Normanton

Connections with Brighton and Hove : Helena Normanton was the first woman to practise as a barrister in Britain after being called to the Bar in 1922. She was born in 1882 and attended York Place School before going to London University and Dijon in France. Normanton wanted to be a lawyer but could not be admitted as a member of the Middle Temple until 1919 when the Sex Disqualification Act had been removed She was the first English woman barrister to conduct a case in the USA, to serve as counsel in the High Court and the Old Bailey and the first to use her maiden name on her passport, while being married.

Helena Normanton was also the first woman to prosecute in a murder trial and one of the first to become a King's Counsel. But this did not make her much money and she supplemented her income by journalism, writing extensively for Good Housekeeping magazine. She was also President of the Married Women's Association until a disagreement in 1952 made her resign and set up the rival Council for Married Women.

Helen Normanton lived in London with her husband, accountant Gavin Bowman Watson Clark. But she always maintained her links with the Brighton area. In 1956 a fund was established to create a new university in Sussex. She was the first recorded donor to the fund, sending money to Brighton's Director of Education Dr William Stone who was promoting the idea of a university. She also left shares to the University which were used to fund law scholarships.

Helen Normanton died in October 1957 and is buried with her husband in Ovingdean churchyard.

53 Scania Omnilink carried name since delivery in September 2008, on SHUTTLE 50. SHUTTLE 50 branding removed January 2012.