Oxford University sets up Thatcher scholarship

LONDON (AFP) - Britain's famous Oxford University is to honour former prime minister Margaret Thatcher, who died last month, with a £100 million (S$190 million) scholarship trust for "future leaders", the Daily Telegraph reported on Tuesday.

The Margaret Thatcher Scholarship Trust, backed by patrons including fellow former prime minister Tony Blair and ex-US president George Bush senior, is aimed at giving young people who have succeeded "against the odds" the opportunity to study at the prestigious institution.

Ten "Thatcher scholars" will be selected each year from around the globe, with an emphasis on those from poorer backgrounds.

Mrs Thatcher, who died on April 8 aged 87, studied chemistry at the university's Somerville College in October 1943.

Other famous patrons include Mr Ronald Reagan's widow Nancy and former US Secretaries of State Henry Kissinger and Condoleezza Rice.

Friend and former adviser Charles Powell, who approached the patrons, told the newspaper: "They saw her as a historic figure and wanted to be associated with a way of remembering her legacy. It is beyond politics, it is beyond vanity."