The artist’s trial model of the sculpture of Sir Winston Churchill which sits on the village green at Westerham is to be offered at auction in Selsdon next month.
Television antiques expert Catherine Southon will be staging her latest auction at Farleigh Golf Club on October 2, when the table-top-sized maquette of Oscar Nemon’s bronze of Churchill is estimated to fetch between £6,000 and £10,000.
The owner’s late husband, Bob Webster, was presented with the maquette as the chairman of the fundraising committee for the Churchill memorial statue on Westerham Green. Churchill’s long-time home, Chartwell, is just outside the village.
On Churchill’s death in 1965, the villagers wanted a lasting memorial and it was decided that a statue on the green would be a fitting sign of their respect and affection. Among the fund-raising activities organised by Webster and his committee was the “Great Churchill Cigar Race”: teams from Westerham’s football club ad rugby club ran from Dover to Westerham over three days pulling giant cigars on wheels.
The statue is being sold at auction together with black and white photographs of the unveiling of the statue.
Another Churchill-related item in the October 2 auction is a cartoon in pencil by Herbert Henry Harris called The ‘WINNI’ng Smile. It carries an estimate of £60 to £80.
“I am delighted to be offering two items relating to Sir Winston Churchill – whose home Chartwell wasn’t far from our office in Bromley,” Southon said.
“However this isn’t the first we have sold items linked to him – in December 2017, we sold a pair of his tortoiseshell spectacles made by his opticians CW Dixey & Sons for £6,000 plus premium, so we are hoping the items in the October sale attract a lot of interest.”
September 3, of course, marks the 80th anniversary of Britain declaring war with Germany, and the start of World War II, which was to prove to be Churchill’s, and millions of others, finest hour – as they fought and defeated despotic, fascist tyranny.
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