Fashion designer and punk movement leader Vivienne Westwood dies aged 81

29 December 2022, 21:30 | Updated: 29 December 2022, 21:37

Vivienne Westwood is pictured in London in May this year
Vivienne Westwood is pictured in London in May this year. Picture: Getty

By Adam Solomons

Iconic British fashion designer and leading punk figure Dame Vivienne Westwood has died aged 81.

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Westwood died peacefully surrounded by loved ones at her home in London.

Her fashion house of the same name tweeted just after 9pm: "Vivienne Westwood died today, peacefully and surrounded by her family, in Clapham, South London.

"The world needs people like Vivienne to make a change for the better."

Westwood shot to fame in the 1970s at the height of the punk movement.

Her designs have since become a global brand associated with a spiky conception of Britishness.

She was awarded a damehood in 2006.

Westwood famously did not wear knickers to collect her OBE from the Queen in 1992.

Read more: Football icon Pelé dies aged 82 after cancer battle as Gary Lineker pays tribute to the "great entertainer"

Westwood opens a V&A exhibition of her work in 2004
Westwood opens a V&A exhibition of her work in 2004. Picture: Getty
Vivienne Westwood is pictured in 1977
Vivienne Westwood is pictured in 1977. Picture: Getty

Husband and creative partner Andreas Kronthaler said tonight: "I will continue with Vivienne in my heart.

"We have been working until the end and she has given me plenty of things to get on with."

Westwood also spent years campaigning for civil rights, animal rights and other liberal political causes.

In 2020 she notably led a public protests against the detention of WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange.

Suspended inside a cage, she said: "Don't extradite Assange - it's a stitch-up."

Westwood shielded for 16 weeks during the Covid pandemic, but re-emerged to public life after restrictions were lifted.

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