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The Queen tops power list as 'influential' Kate misses out

February 12, 2013
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The Queen returns from her short break at Sandringham to some positive news – she has been named the country's most powerful woman. A poll by BBC Radio 4's flagship show Woman's Hour places Her Majesty top of a list of 100 prominent females.


Kate Middleton, however, isn't named anywhere on the poll, which is the first of its kind. Home Secretary Theresa May and Santander Bank's UK CEO Ana Botín instead join Her Majesty in the top three.

Having the Queen in poll position won't come as a surprise to anyone. She has just marked 61 years on the throne and is at the height of her monarchical powers. But the decision to leave out her wildly popular granddaughter-in-law, the Duchess of Cambridge, has raised more than a few eyebrows. Journalist Eve Pollard and her fellow panellist were at the ready with an explanation: "Inevitably, not everyone will agree with the 100 we have chosen. There are some omissions. "For example, we had long debates about the Duchess of Cambridge. Is she influential? Hugely. Is she powerful? Not yet".  The list honoured women from a range of fields including business, fashion and the arts. Songstress Adele and designer Victoria Beckham were also name checked. Both are currently Stateside putting their power into practice – Victoria has wowed the couture crowd with an acclaimed show at New York Fashion Week, while Adele, 24, won her ninth Grammy on Sunday evening.


At the moment, the two ladies join Kate as Britain's best known exports across the Pond, and although the pregnant Duchess doesn't join them on the Women's Hour honours list, she has topped other polls. Kate and her sister Pippa previously featured on Time's prestigious 2012 list, when they were dubbed "avatars of aspiration"; Kate for her meteoric rise to royalty, and Pippa for being "globally recognised". Catherine Mayer, Time's then European editor, was part of the team who helped decide on the final list. "The Middleton sisters are jointly on the list and the thinking behind that is that they have gone from obscurity to being among the most pictured women in the world," she said. "They say almost nothing so what we are talking about here is a particular kind of influence. It's an influence through imagery but in the world we live in, it's incredibly potent." 

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