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World War Two


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Classic special forces beret brings a very special price

13 May 2019

A classic SAS beige beret from the Second World War has sold for what is believed to be a record-breaking £17,500 hammer price.

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Remarkable RAF fighter ace diary sells at Cambridge auction

21 August 2017

Personal and unique insights into warfare score highly at auction. So it proved at Cambridge firm Cheffins (22.5% buyer’s premium) in The Connoisseurs Sale on July 6, when a journal revealing the private thoughts of a Second World War fighter ace credited with more enemy ‘kills’ than any other British pilot doubled the top estimate to sell for £16,000.

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Dunkirk 1940 evacuation in movie form and now original photos up at auction

21 July 2017

With Christopher Nolan’s epic new film Dunkirk released today in the UK, it is a perfect time to focus on still rather than moving images which reveal the original picture of the 1940 evacuation.

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Who dares wins big bids for special forces relics

10 April 2017

Special forces memorabilia making special prices is not a top-secret scenario in the militaria world. The appetite is always high for the exploits of small elite units where bravery and hair-raising tales are the norm.

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Personal view of Churchill revealed in photo album

10 April 2017

A photo collection sold at C&T formed part of an archive relating to Brenda Long, secretary to General Sir H Ismay (later Lord Ismay), Chief of Staff to Sir Winston Churchill from mid-1944 until the end of 1945.

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Raiders spark bidding battle for rare badge

10 April 2017

One of the more obscure Second World War special forces units was the little-known Raiding Support Regiment. Bosleys (23% buyer’s premium) of Marlow sold an embroidered cap badge from this regiment for £3100 (estimate £500-800) on January 25.

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Another D-Day Utah Beach landing craft flag surfaces at auction

23 January 2017

Not many wartime flags survive to be sold at auction due to their inevitably fragile nature, but those flown by Allied forces during the D-Day landings must have been particularly precious as mementos.

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Impressive RAF Bomber Command medals of Squadron Leader Sydney Clayton offered at Sheffield Auction Gallery

10 January 2017

With the heroics of ‘the few’ in the Battle of Britain more or less guaranteeing auction interest, it is easy to overlook the incredible bravery of bomber crews.

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RAF Battle of Britain Irvin flying jacket sells for £4600 at C&T auction

09 December 2016

Uniforms can be a hard sell at militaria auctions. Medals for example are nice and easy to display, while guns can sit high on the wall or in a cabinet, but what do you do with a full set of battledress unless you happen to be a re-enactor or happen to live in a mansion with lots of room for mannequins?

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D-Day flag bought at auction to go on public display

17 September 2016

The Dutch buyer of ‘the most valuable Second World War battle flag ever sold’ has loaned it to the National Military Museum in Soesterberg, the Netherlands.

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Spitfire pilot’s medal group

16 November 2012

This DFC medal group of a British Spitfire pilot who survived the war despite crashing and being given up for dead by his colleagues has an estimate of £8000-10,000 in Plymouth Auction Rooms’ November 21 sale.

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Wartime relic with special connection to Nantwich

08 November 2012

Nantwich, Cheshire auctioneers Peter Wilson are selling this item, believed to be from the engine of a fighter plan which was steered away from houses in the town into the River Weaver by a heroic American pilot.

Lost in the Blitz, but now safely home

18 July 2011

A SCULPTURE has been returned to its former home more than 70 years after it was looted during the Blitz from a bombed London church.

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Air Force medal group for peace-time bravery

04 April 2011

ONE of the rarer acts of peace-time bravery saw the crew of the airship R33 awarded the Air Force Medal.They included George Ernest Long, whose medals and associated ephemera came up for auction at Lockdales of Ipswich on March 27.

‘Bomb’ left on counter clears Rosebery’s

04 April 2011

SOUTH London saleroom Rosebery’s of West Norwood had to be evacuated on Wednesday, March 23 after a client left a Second World War bomb brought in for valuation at the front desk.

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De Gaulle’s original call to arms revived

14 June 2010

WITH the retreat from Dunkirk so much in the news at the moment, Aguttes have a particularly topical offering in their June 18 sale of manuscripts, postcards and historical documents.

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Stalag Luft III’s original scriptwriters

01 February 2010

A PENCIL and watercolour sketch showing men at work on a celebrated escape tunnel was a major attraction in a log or record compiled in 1943-45 by a Scottish P.O.W. sold by Lyon & Turnbull of Edinburgh for £3200 on January 13.

Spitfire sold at £1.58m

08 May 2009

Bonhams sold their second WWII Spitfire aircraft in the space of seven months last week when businessman Steven Brooks paid £1.58m plus premium for a TR Mark IX specification model at an auction held at the Hendon RAF Museum on April 20. The plane had been estimated to make in the region of £1.5-£2m.

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Private sale for WWII ace’s tin leg

10 March 2008

Eleys Auctions in Boston, Lincolnshire have sold by private treaty 43 personal effects of the legendary World War Two double-amputee pilot Douglas Bader.

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Where is the downed Messerschmitt today?

24 September 2007

IT was the first war painting by a Scottish artist to be exhibited in Scotland and was extensively discussed in the Edinburgh and Glasgow newspapers of January 1941.