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Keep Calm and Carry On, The Real Story

Discovered in a bookshop in England in the 1990’s, the image becomes iconic of the 20th century.
The words are not Winston Churchill’s but the famous World War II poster “Keep Calm and Carry On” is now indelibly associated with his spirit and his leadership of the British people.

Ironically, the poster itself was never issued during the War and was only “discovered” just over ten years ago in a bookshop in the northeast of England. Since then the image and phrase have been reproduced, lionized and parodied around the world.

The shop where the poster came to light, Barter Books in Alnwick, Northumberland, recently posted this video on YouTube describing the its history. Meanwhile a collection of the originals has just turned up on the Antiques Roadshow TV series, as reported by the Daily Mail last month.

Churchill would likely have approved.

Barter Books was voted one of “The 20 Most Beautiful Bookstores in the World”. Take a look at photos of all 20 here.

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The International Churchill Society (ICS), founded in 1968 shortly after Churchill's death, is the world’s preeminent member organisation dedicated to preserving the historic legacy of Sir Winston Churchill.

At a time when leadership is challenged at every turn, that legacy looms larger and remains more relevant than ever.