Pocket watch gifted to Winston Churchill by Herbert Henry Asquith, estimate £20,000-30,000 at Dawsons.

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Berkshire auction house Dawsons is offering a pocket watch gifted from one British politician to another, both of whom would go on to take the Prime Minister role.

It was was given to Winston Churchill in 1905 by Herbert Henry Asquith who became the first Liberal PM from 1908-16.

Churchill held the title twice (1940-45 and 1951-55) as a Conservative. He started his political career with the Tories but in 1904 he famously crossed the floor to the Liberal party, due to a disagreement with the Conservative leadership’s stance on tariff reform, along with other policies.

He decided to side with the progressive wing of the Liberal Party, which focused on free trade and social reform, which contributed to the Liberal Party consequently gaining power in 1904. The gift from Asquith was to acknowledge this bold move and the pocket watch is inscribed on its inner case: To Winston with gratitude H. H. Asquith Xmas 1905. It is also engraved on the front case with Churchill’s coat of arms/armorial.


Pocket watch gifted to Winston Churchill by Herbert Henry Asquith, estimate £20,000-30,000 at Dawsons.

The watch was originally purchased by Asquith from the clock and watchmaker Sir John Bennett (1814-97). By 1983 it had been bought from silversmith Hennell by the Countess of Enniskillen for her husband, then in given to a family member in 1997 and comes to auction by descent.

The watch is estimated at £20,000-30,000 in the Fine Jewellery, Watches and Silver auction in Maidenhead on May 23.


Gambling plaques used in Sean Connery’s first-ever scene as James Bond, estimate £1400-1800 at Ewbank Auctions.

Gambling plaques used in Sean Connery’s first-ever scene as James Bond will be up for auction in Ewbank’s Entertainment & Memorabilia auction on May 30.

Issued for £50 (number 0283) and £100 (numbered 0030), the betting plaques were genuine casino chips loaned by the Le Cercle Casino at Les Ambassadeurs Club in London. They can be seen clearly on the gaming table in Dr No as 007, acting as banker in the card game, memorably introduced himself with the line “Bond, James Bond” for the first time.

The plaques offered here came from the Mills family who owned the casino until 1992. Estimate £1400-1800.


A classic oil painting by Beryl Cook (1926-2008), estimate £8000-12,000 at Plymouth Auction Rooms.

A classic oil painting by Beryl Cook (1926-2008) is to be sold at Plymouth Auction Rooms on June 12. Titled Bingo, the scene is so typical of her work with a humorous observation of people and almost caricature type portraits.

Measuring 20½ x 11½in (52 x 29cm), the picture by Cook - who was from Plymouth - was purchased shortly after it was painted, featured at the Portal Gallery in London and will be offered with the original receipt dating from 1992.

Estimate £8000-12,000.


Italian glass model of Venezia by Venini, estimate £600-900 at Olympia Auctions.

This Italian glass model by Venini was made in c.1949-50 as part of the Costumi Regionali series by Fulvio Bianconi (1915-96). The figure of Venezia (model 2999) with black hair and cape with ‘zanfirico’ and blue and red skirts, stands 10in (25cm) high.

It has an estimate of £600-900 at Olympia Auctions in London on May 23.


Live steam locomotive and six-wheel tender by Schoenner, estimate £5000-7000 at Chilcotts.

Chilcotts’ sale in Honiton, Devon, on May 18 includes this Schoenner gauge 3, live steam locomotive and six-wheel tender, c.1905. The Black Prince is estimated at £5000-7000.

Founded in Nüremberg 1875 by Jean Schoenner, the company built mostly steam toys before the business was sold in 1912 to Josef Falk.


An archive of costumes, photographs and memories celebrating variety acts Wilson, Keppel and Betty, estimate £2000-2500 at Richard Winterton.

An archive of costumes, photographs and memories celebrating one of music hall’s best-known variety acts over three decades, Wilson, Keppel and Betty, is going to auction at Richard Winterton in Lichfield.

The trio originally capitalised on the 1920s trend for ancient Egypt following the discovery of Tutankhamun’s tomb, including a ‘sand dance’ with sand spread over the stage, and travelled the world.

With a stage life running from 1928-62, the Betty role was to be taken on by as many as 14 dancers over 34 years as the changing trio travelled the world with the slapstick pseudo-Egyptian dance act.

The personal collection of the final ‘Betty’ - Birmingham-born Jean ‘Jeanne’ MacKinnon, née Curley - is going under the hammer on May 20 as a single lot estimated at £2000-2500.

Items include two of MacKinnon’s costumes sewn by Joe Keppel himself.

MacKinnon died in 2018 aged 86. She had no children and her archive was gifted to a close friend from the entertainment business.


Gold Guinea from 1790s, estimated at £600-800 at Lawrences of Crewkerne.

In January 1969 a Mr Hancock had a surprise when working as a heating engineer at Tudor House, Westmancote. Under the floorboards was a hoard of late 18th century coins, of such interest that the British Museum decided to keep an example from the group for the national collection: a guinea of 1789.

The remainder, found to be ‘treasure trove’ but not being required by a museum, were returned to the finder and owner of the Worcestershire property.

Fifty-Seven Guineas constituted a sizeable fortune at the end of the 1790s. Given the condition of the coins it seems likely they were recently acquired from a bank and had seen virtually no circulation or use.

Lawrences of Crewkerne is offering seven of the coins from this hoard, all gold Guineas of George III from 1787-94.

They were retained in the family of the owner and until now not seen in public apart from a brief outing in 1969.

The Guinea pictured here is estimated at £600-800 in the Spring Auction of Militaria, Medals and Coins on May 23-24.


Umayyad period gold coin struck around AH72-74 (691-694AD), estimated at £150,000-200,000 at Morton & Eden.

A very rare coin measuring just 20mm in diameter and weighing 4.27g is coming up for auction with Morton & Eden in London on June 12.

During the Umayyad period of Arab expansion across former Byzantine and Persian lands, experiments were put in hand by the caliph ‘Abd al-Malik bin Marwan to establish a national Islamic currency.

In former Byzantine regions where the solidus was well-established as the primary gold coin in commerce, the Arabs started to experiment by initially removing any traces of Christian symbolism from the coinage but at the same time retaining the images of the Byzantine rulers.

The next stage was to eliminate all Latin inscriptions and introduce the Shahada inscribed in kufic script, emphasising the basic tenets of Islam as well as rejecting the Christian belief of the Trinity: Bismillah la illah ila Allah wahdahu Muhammad rasul Allah (In the name of God, there is no god but God. He is unique. Mohammad is the Messenger of God).

Struck around AH72-74 (691-694AD), this example is in remarkably fine condition and is estimated at £150,000-200,000. Ultimately the caliph established a purely epigraphic Islamic coinage in AH77 (697AD) and coins like this one were demonetised.


Victorian snake bracelet and locket embellished with graduated cabochon turquoise and rose cut diamonds, estimate £1000-1500 at Sworders.

Following on from the sale of the contents of the late Maurice ‘Dick’ Turpin’s London residence earlier this year, Sworders is selling jewellery from the estate in a Fine Jewellery sale on May 21.

Of particular note is this Victorian snake bracelet and locket embellished with graduated cabochon turquoise and rose cut diamonds.

Estimate £1000-1500.