Basil Hume OSB, OM was a monk of the English Benedictine monastery of Ampleforth Abbey and for 13 years its abbot until his appointment as Archbishop of Westminster in 1976. His elevation to a cardinal of the Roman Catholic Church followed during the same year. From 1979 Hume served also as President of the Catholic Bishops' Conference of England and Wales. He held these appointments until his death from cancer in 1999. His final resting place is at Westminster Cathedral in the Chapel of St Gregory and St Augustine.
During his lifetime Hume received wide respect from the general public which went beyond the Catholic community. Following his death, a statue of him in his monastic habit and wearing his abbatial cross was erected in his home town of Newcastle upon Tyne outside St Mary's Cathedral, unveiled by Queen Elizabeth II.