Churchill and The Crown
A new outdoor photography exhibition will open at Chartwell, the family home of Sir Winston Churchill, this winter. Churchill purchased Chartwell as a home for his family in 1922 after he fell in love with the breathtaking views across the Weald of Kent. It was a place to work, paint, write and entertain friends away from the pressures of political life in London.
In 2022 Her Majesty The Queen will become the first British Monarch to celebrate a Platinum Jubilee, having acceded to the throne in 1952 during Churchill’s second term as Prime Minister. The two had a close and genuine relationship, having first met when the Queen was just two years old. The series of hand-selected archive photographs will tell the story of the special relationship between the young Queen and Sir Winston Churchill, at his family home.
Churchill became the Queen’s trusted advisor through the earliest years of her reign, and she meant a great deal to him. This enduring relationship is illustrated by the photograph of her on her Coronation Day, which Churchill hung on the wall of his Study at Chartwell.
Delivered in partnership with TopFoto, the reproduced photographs will be enlarged and displayed on the fully accessible Terrace Lawn, situated just outside Churchill’s family home and overlooking the beautiful winter gardens and estate. Together, the images will bring to life a genuine warmth and friendship which extended beyond that of monarch and advisor.
In a speech broadcast ahead of her coronation, Churchill referred to the Queen as ‘a Lady whom we respect because she is our Queen and whom we love because she is herself’, showing just how fond he was of her.
Years later, when asked which Prime Minister she enjoyed meeting with the most, the Queen replied, “Winston of course, because it was always such fun.” One of her household staff even remarked “I could not hear what they talked about, but it was, more often than not, punctuated with peals of laughter, and Winston generally came out wiping his eyes.”
Katherine Carter, Chartwell’s curator and lead creator of the new exhibition says: ‘By exploring photographs of these two iconic individuals, we can see a genuine warmth and friendship which extended beyond that of monarch and counsel, and it’s wonderful to be able to celebrate their relationship here at Churchill’s former home.’
Churchill and the Crown is open from 15 January to 27 February 2022, 10am to 4pm, at Chartwell and is a free exhibition included with normal admission.
All images by: ©National Trust Images: Andrew Butler, unless otherwise noted.