Charting Churchill: Saint Paul’s Cathedral, London

Saint Paul's Cathedral, London 2014 by Leslie Hossack

Saint Paul’s Cathedral, London 2014

© Leslie Hossack

The year 2015 commemorates the 50th anniversary of the death of Sir Winston Churchill. In 1965, he died at the age of 90 at his home in London, on January 24th. This was the same day that his father, Lord Randolph Churchill, had died 70 years earlier. Sir Winston was honoured with a State Funeral, and for three days his coffin lay in state in Westminster Hall. Then on January 30th at 9:45, the funeral cortege left Westminster Hall, and Sir Winston Churchill’s coffin was drawn through the crowded, silent streets of London to Saint Paul’s Cathedral.

The 11:00 funeral service was attended by the Queen, the Duke of Edinburgh, and other members of the royal family. Also present were dignitaries from around the world, including: President Charles de Gaulle of France, former President Dwight Eisenhower of the United States, and Prime Minister and Mrs. Lester Pearson of Canada. Plans for the funeral, code-named Operation Hope Not, had been years in the making. Churchill had not taken a very active part in the planning, but he did specify that he wanted military bands and soldiers.

Following the service, the funeral cortege left Saint Paul’s, arriving at Tower Hill at 12:25. There was a Royal Air Force Fly Past at 12:52. During the river cortege, as Sir Winston’s coffin passed by, the cranes along the Thames were lowered in final tribute. At 13:05 the river cortege arrived at Festival Hall Pier, and a motor cortege proceeded to Waterloo Station. From there a special train departed at 13:25, carrying Sir Winston Churchill on his final journey to Saint Martin’s Churchyard in Bladon, just a mile from Blenheim Palace where he was born.

The image featured above is part of the limited edition collector’s portfolio created by Leslie Hossack to mark the 50th anniversary of the death of Sir Winston Churchill. She presents locations that chart Churchill’s personal and political life, from his birth at Blenheim Palace in 1874 until his death in London in 1965. THE CHURCHILL PHOTOGRAPHS are part of Hossack’s larger body of work that explores Nazi architecture in Berlin, Stalinist structures in Moscow, contested sites in Jerusalem, a Cold War bunker in Ottawa, NATO’s Headquarter Camp in Kosovo, and buildings linked to the Japanese Canadian internment during World War II.

To view more photographs, please visit Leslie’s website.

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