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Churchill & the RMS Queen Mary

Cunard Vessel Celebrates 80th Anniversary with Gala Party and Exhibition of Ten Paintings by Churchill

RMS Queen Mary Long Beach January 2011 view

Thirty members of The Churchill Centre were among the 400 guests attending a gala party on May 26th to celebrate the eightieth anniversary of the maiden voyage of the Royal Mail Ship Queen Mary. Randolph Churchill and his wife Catherine headed a VIP list that included Lord Watson of Richmond and HM Consul General in Los Angeles, Christopher O’Connor. All three spoke about the importance of the ship in Winston Churchill’s career and in the history of Anglo-American relations. To view Randolph’s speech, please CLICK HERE. After the banquet, guests joined Randolph on the fantail of the ship for brandy and cigars. Proceeds went to benefit the Queen Mary Heritage Fund.

The party also marked the opening of a new exhibition of Churchill paintings. Ten of the finest have been brought together with the help of the family of Churchill’s late grandson Julian Sandys and the National Churchill Museum of the United States in Fulton, Missouri.

Housed in a beautifully renovated gallery space, The Passion for Painting: The Art of Winston Churchill Exhibition Aboard the Queen Mary offers a unique opportunity to view paintings rarely seen in North America by the British statesman and one of the Queen’s most illustrious passengers. To watch a video about the exhibition, please CLICK HERE.

The exhibition also includes several objects from the permanent collection of the National Churchill Museum including never-before exhibited items related to Churchill’s visit to Westminster College, where he delivered his most significant post-war speech, the “Sinews of Peace,” commonly known as the “Iron Curtain Speech” on 5 March 1946.

The Cunard-line vessel on which Churchill sailed many times across the Atlantic both during and after the war has now been anchored in Long Beach, California for nearly fifty years serving as both a hotel and museum. To watch a thirteen-minute video about Churchill’s connection with the ship, please CLICK 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.

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