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Given the military fame of the Wellesley family, it comes as a surprise to learn that only two of the Dukes actually saw action on the battlefield, the First ‘Iron’ Duke and the Sixth Duke, Henry, killed in action in Italy in September 1943.

As a mark of respect Queen Mary, who was a friend of Henry’s mother, returned the Rent Flag for that year to the family home of Stratfield Saye and it, together with a sword, sashes and belt, were included in the lot.

The auctioneers would not disclose any details about the purchaser of the ensemble at £2200, but the trade speculated that it would eventually end up in a regimental or family museum.