April 1, 2023

The World of Churchill Collectables: Speaking Announcement


On 15 October 1951, when the event for the ticket shown here was held, Winston Churchill was a member of Parliament and the Conservative Party’s Leader of the Opposition. He would begin his second premiership on 26 October, just eleven days later. So why was he speaking on behalf of a Liberal candidate, Lady Violet Bonham Carter?

Violet Bonham Carter was the daughter of Prime Minister H. H. Asquith. While living at 10 Downing Street during her father’s premiership (1908–1916), she was introduced to many of the influential politicians of the Liberal Party, including young Winston Churchill. The two formed a friendship that lasted almost sixty years. In 1965, Lady Violet published Winston Churchill: An Intimate Portrait, her recollections of Churchill for the period 1906-1916. 

In the 1945 election, Lady Violet stood for election as MP for Wells but came in third. In 1951, she stood for MP from Colne Valley. Churchill persuaded the Conservatives not to run a candidate for the seat, giving Lady Violet a clear path to running solely against the Labour candidate. As this ticket shows, Churchill also publicly endorsed Lady Violet’s candidacy, speaking on her behalf at a meeting sponsored by the Colne Valley Division Liberal Association.

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Despite Churchill’s influence and assistance, Lady Violet was nonetheless narrowly defeated. In 1964, however, she was created a life peer as Baroness Asquith of Yarnbury and was active in the House of Lords until her death in 1969 at age 81.

Brian Krapf’s forthcoming book We Want Winston!—A Treasury of Memorabilia will be published later this year.

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