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Designed to force the shoulders back and the chest forwards, the rigid bodice style was popularised during the reign of the Sun King, Louis XIV (1638-1715), who liked the women of his court to display as much décolleté as possible. The fashion continued until the French Revolution.

A habit de cour bodice from France dating to c.1765-75, made of pale pink satin overlaid with scalloped bands of silver lace and a tiny 53.5cm (21in) waist, is estimated at £6000-10,000 on June 17 at vintage fashion specialist Kerry Taylor Auctions in Bermondsey, south-east London.

kerrytaylorauctions.com


This fresh-to-the-market classic yellow Tour de France jersey was once worn in the gruelling race by the legendary cyclist Eddy Merckx (b.1945).

Merckx amassed five Tour de France wins. The Le Coq Sportif cotton jersey was worn in the 61st edition in 1974 when Merckx equalled French cyclist Jacques Anquetil’s five Tour victories.

It has been owned since 1974 by a Belgian lady whose father was given the jersey by his friend Jean Crahay, the driver of the car used by a Belgian sports newspaper. The lot will be offered with autographs and a winner’s ribbon sash on June 14 at Cardiff saleroom Rogers Jones estimated at £5000-10,000.

rogersjones.co.uk*

Around 2100 George Medals have been awarded since its inception in 1940 – but only 27 have been awarded twice, signified by a bar on the original medal. George Henderson won the GM twice while working in the RAF and the Colonial Service, primarily in the Middle East. The first was in 1956 when he single-handedly dispersed a group of 10 tribesman in Nisab (now Yemen) who ambushed his car and entourage.

His second was posthumously awarded in 1963 when he threw himself in front of a grenade hurled by a veiled member of the Egyptian-supported National Liberation Front (NLF) towards Sir Kennedy Trevaskis, the British High Commissioner of Aden. Henderson died of his wounds several days later.

His medal group will be offered on behalf of his family at Burstow & Hewett in Battle, East Sussex, on June 19-20, estimated at £10,000-15,000.

burstowandhewett.co.uk*