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26 September 2014
A blue plaque commemorating Clementine Churchill’s early life in the borough was unveiled by the Mayor, Cllr Maighread Condon-Simmonds yesterday (Thursday 25 September) at 51 Abingdon Villas, W8.
Joining the Mayor was Sir Winston and Lady Churchill’s grandson, Rt Hon Sir Nicholas Soames MP; the three local ward Councillors, Victoria Borwick, Joanna Gardner and James Husband. Also in attendance were the current owners of 51 Abingdon Villas, Ben Wisen and Margaret O’Riordan and also local residents David Charlesworth and Charles Mickleworth who researched and proposed the idea of a blue plaque to the ward Councillors.
Clementine Hozier lived on Abington Villas from 1903 until her marriage to Winston Churchill in 1908.
As Clementine Churchill she took an active role on the home front in both world wars. During the first she organised canteens for munitions workers on behalf of the Young Men’s Christian Association for which she was awarded a CBE in 1918.
In World War 2 Lady Churchill was again involved, this time as Chairman of the Red Cross Aid to Russia Fund, the President of the Young Women's Christian Association War Time Appeal and the Chairman of Fulmer Chase Maternity Hospital for Wives of Junior Officers.
The Mayor, Cllr Condon-Simmonds said: “Lady Clementine Churchill did an huge amount during both world wars, not to mention having to deal with the pressure Sir Winston was under as Prime Minster in such a dark hour. She also worked hard as a cross-bench peer in the House of Lords in later life. I am delighted we are able to recognise her and mark her early life in the Royal Borough.”
Sir Nicholas Soames added: “On behalf of my whole family can I thank the Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea for their generosity and kindness in commemorating my grandmother Lady Churchill’s early life in the borough. Can I also thank the current owners of 51 Abingdon Villas and David Charlesworth and Charles Mickleworth, local residents, who proposed the idea of the blue plaque. She would have been very touched to have been remembered in this way.”
The blue plaque is part of the Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea’s City Living, Local Life initiative. This allows ward Councillors to recommend funding for local schemes which would benefit from a financial contribution from the Council.
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