Stars cite favourite things for museum

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FOR DAME Judi Dench it was a safety pin, for the broadcaster John Humphrys a horse and plough and, for Sir Terence Conran, a Vespa scooter.

These were their objects of "special significance" selected to feature, as a "celebrity drawcard", on the Museums and Galleries Commission's website, which was launched yesterday.

Dame Judi - who has worn unwieldy crinoline in countless costume dramas, said the safety pin had been a vital tool in her career. "This has been a life saver to me on many occasions and if it is not already in a museum, I think it should be."

Others revealed a weakness for nostalgia. Zoe Ball, the media presenter, nominated the Roberts radio because it reminded her of her childhood.

The Liberal Democrats leader, Paddy Ashdown, chose Botticelli's Primavera. "It's always been one of my favourites and this was confirmed by my first sight of it in 1972."

The director of the Museums and Galleries Commission, Timothy Mason, said the website was designed to help visitors and those working in museums. "It will provide a one-stop information point for all museum-related inquiries."

The website address is: