Coffin Works presents a fitting commemoration of the funeral of Winston Churchill
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Exactly 50 years to the day since Churchill’s funeral, Newman Brothers at the Coffin Works will be marking the event in a special evening of commemoration on Friday 30th January.
The funeral of Sir Winston Churchill, the largest state funeral that had ever been mounted, took place 50 years ago, on 30th January 1965. Newman Brothers Coffin Works in the Jewellery Quarter has a unique handle on commemoration of the event, because it was in this factory that the handles and other fittings for Churchill’s coffin were made. It was a contribution to ‘Operation Hope Not’ – code name for the funeral arrangements – of which the Birmingham factory was intensely proud.
Today, Newman Brothers is Birmingham’s newest and most unusual heritage attraction. With a bit of detective work, researchers working on the huge collection of artefacts housed in the museum have found examples still ‘in stock’ of the type of handles – needless to say amongst the best and most expensive – used on Churchill’s coffin.
With the atmospheric factory as a backdrop, looking much as it did at the time of the funeral, this special commemorative evening event on the 30th January will include a chance to hear again some of Churchill’s most inspiring speeches from 1940, the year that Britain was in greatest threat of invasion from Nazi Germany.
There will be an illustrated presentation on the pageantry of the funeral itself, from the lying in state in Westminster Hall, through the service in St. Paul’s Cathedral and the procession of the coffin along the Thames by boat and thence by train to Bladon, near Churchill’s birthplace at Blenheim Palace, where the interment took place in private.
Finally, visitors will have the chance to view examples of the type of coffin furniture used on Churchill’s coffin.
For details of this unique celebration of the life and death of Sir Winston Churchill and to obtain tickets, call 0121 233 4790 or visit www.coffinworks.org/whats-on.