Nottingham

Portland diamond tiara theft: Gallery set to reopen

Portland Tiara case Image copyright Portland Collection
Image caption The empty case where the Portland Tiara was once housed will be on display at the reopening

A gallery is set to reopen nearly a year after a diamond tiara was stolen in a targeted raid.

The Portland Collection, situated in the Welbeck estate near Worksop, closed after the Portland Tiara and a brooch were stolen in November last year.

A £100,000 reward has been offered for information which would lead to the recovery of the tiara.

The Portland Collection will reopen on Saturday with an empty case, where the tiara was once held.

The collection, based at the Harley Gallery, has been closed since the raid.

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Media captionCCTV shows the moments before the Portland Tiara was stolen

A police appeal featured on BBC One's Crimewatch Roadshow Live on Monday.

Six people - five men and one woman - were held on suspicion of conspiracy to burgle and released under investigation, Nottinghamshire Police said.

The force wants to hear from anyone with information on a silver Audi S5 found burnt out in Cross Lane, Blidworth, about 30 minutes after the burglary on 20 November.

A private appeal offering the reward is being administered by The Art Loss Register.

What is the Portland Tiara?

Image copyright Welbeck Estate
Image caption The tiara was made for Winifred, Duchess of Portland, to wear at King Edward VII's coronation

The tiara was commissioned in 1902 by the 6th Duke of Portland for the coronation of Edward VII.

French jewellers Cartier designed the head piece from diamonds supplied by the duke.

It was worn by Duchess Winifred, one of four duchesses who held a canopy over Queen Alexandra, the Queen's great-grandmother.

The tiara had previously been damaged by the duke when he accidentally sat on it before a party.

The Victoria and Albert Museum's curator of jewellery Richard Edgcumbe said: "It has been recognised as a jewel of supreme importance, a superb design magnificently executed."

It was put on show to the public in 2016, and was seen by more than 100,000 visitors before it was stolen.

Exhibits at the gallery's reopening will include portraits of four duchesses of Portland, spanning four centuries.

The exhibition will highlight the forward-thinking female ancestors who have presided over the Welbeck Estate.

Image copyright Portland Collection
Image caption Portraits of ancestors of the Welbeck Estate, including Duchess Winifred, will also be on display

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