03/03/2017
Share this story Share on Facebook icon Share on Twitter icon Share on Pinterest icon Share on Google Plus icon Share on Linked In icon Share via Email icon

Winston Churchill documents sold at Catherine Southon auction

db9af2c0-2c14-4a3b-b8e9-a252cb8f2591

'Operation Hope Not' was the code name given to Churchill's funeral which had been planned for some years prior to his death in London on the 24th of January 1965 of a stroke. It was the first state funeral given to a civilian and can only be described as one of the most meticulously planned events in modern history given its scale and significance.

The vendors grandfather had been in the police force and was involved in part of the funeral arrangements. He retired soon afterwards and never really talked about his involvement in the funeral organisation. After his death, his family found an envelope titled 'Her Majesty's Service' and dated 26 January 1965, Commissioner's Office and inside they found the documents in a folder. They detailed the movements of military and civilian organisations for the funeral parade, organised Special District Orders by Major-General E.J.B. Nelson, General Officer Commanding London District and Major-General Commanding The Household Brigade, Headquarter, London District, Horse Guards, Whitehall, S.W.1. The folder contained parts I to XIV, listing instructions, procession, street lining, minute guns, ceremonial orders, private joinery from London to Bladon, orders of conferences and rehearsals and maps.

The plans were implemented on a grey Saturday morning in January 1965, four days after the death of the former Prime Minister. The funeral plans included an extraordinary procession through London, a ceremony at St Paul’s Cathedral, dispatch from the Tower of London by river launch, a military fly past, construction cranes lining the Thames and a train from Waterloo Station to Churchill’s burial place at Bladon in Oxfordshire – all arranged with military precision.

The Duke of Norfolk led the organisation of events. Tens of thousands had lined the route and television and radio coverage reached almost 900 million people world-wide. The British Royal family were attending as well as the monarch and many other world leaders were also present.

The documents realised a price of £472 including auctioneers commission.

 

Back to News & Articles

03/03/2017 Share this story   Share on Facebook icon Share on Twitter icon Share on Pinterest icon Share on Google Plus icon Share on Linked In icon Share via Email icon

Recent Updates

Canadian WWII hero’s VC for auction

The VC and other medals awarded to Lieutenant Colonel David Currie are being auctioned in London by Dix, ...


Commemorative watch for RAF 100

Premium British watch brand launches limited edition timepiece to celebrate 100 years of the RAF. ...


50 years of Gavin Gardiner gun auctions

Gavin Gardiner Ltd’s auction of Modern & Vintage Sporting Guns at the Gleneagles Hotel, Auchterarder, ...


Gallant Scotman’s Victoria Cross to be auctioned

The Victoria Cross won by Gunner James Park, chosen to receive the decoration by his comrades, is up for ...


Other Articles

Take to the skies with Fonthill Media

New selection of books from Fonthill Media focus on the RAF and war in the air. ...


Cannon, mines and a skull unearthed

Work to create a deeper and wider channel for the Royal Navy’s new aircraft carriers at Portsmouth harbour ...


New raft of books from Pen & Sword

The military book publisher has a range of new titles from classic conflicts and leaders to WWII. ...


September issue now on sale

The Dunkirk-themed September issue of The Armourer is now available to buy in the shops or via the website. ...