One of Sir Winston Churchill’s half smoked cigars is heading to an auction house in Shrewsbury next month much to the delight of a historians and cigar aficionados.
The half-smoked stogie has the well-known red and gold Winston Churchill band and will be auctioned off alongside photographs, a penned letter from his secretary that is written on the official House of Commons headed notepaper, which are set to cause quite a lot of excitement at the fine art auctioneers Halls’ two-day country house auction on the 26th and 27th of April.
Sir Winston Churchill is often regarded as one of the country’s finest Prime Ministers, who held office twice, from 1940 – 1945 and again from 1951 – 1955, and it was during his first stint that he led Britain to victory during World War 2,
Churchill, famous for his love of fine cigars, would often smoke between six and ten a day, with some of his favourite brands being Romeo y Julieta and Camacho. This cigar, he smoked to halfway before boarding a plane at le Bouget, Paris on May 11th 1947 during a three-day break at the French capital. The photo that accompanies the cigar in the auction lot shows the much-loved PM carrying out his own personal cigar herf in the doorway of the Avro York MW101.
Senior Auctioneer, Andrew Beeston, spoke of the history behind the stogie saying:
“He stubbed out the cigar in an ashtray after boarding the plane and it was taken into protective custody by Corporal William Alan Turner, Air Quartermaster with 24 Squadron Transport Command, who was a member of the cabin crew that flew Churchill and his wife from RAF Northolt to Paris and home again.
“The cigar remained in late Corporal Turner’s possession and must have been a topic of conversation for many years. Had it not been half smoked by the great man, the value would have been much less and the photograph supports the provenance.”
James Grinter, auctioneer, added: “The market for Winston Churchill collectables is buoyant at the moment, especially with the recent launch of the new £5 note featuring Churchill. He remains a figure in the public consciousness even 51 years after his death.