Rebuilding The House of Commons – 3 Books

Posted on Jan 17, 2012

House of Commons (The Rebuilding of) – Here we have three books which fit together quite well.

The chamber in which the House of Commons had sat since 1852 was destroyed by enemy action on the 10th May, 1941. It formed part of the second Palace of Westminster, built by Sir Charles Barry to take the place of the first which was burnt down in 1834.

The first is a Report from the Select committee on House of Commons (Rebuilding) Together with Photographs, Plans and Sections, and the Proceedings of the Committee, Ordered by the House of Commons to be Printed 25th October 1944. London His Majesty’s Stationary Office 1944.

This is a very nice production, blue wrappers, 28 pages plus photographs of the Old Chamber and 10 fold out plans and sections of the proposed New House of Commons. A fine copy.

The second work is The Laying of the Foundation Stone of The New Chamber of the House Commons by the Speaker, 26th May 1948.  London HMSO October 1948. This is the hardbound version in dark green buckram with gilt titling on the front and gilt portcullis on the rear board.  This book contains speeches by the Rt. Hon. C.R. Atlee, Prime Minister, and the Rt. Hon. Winston Churchill, Leader of the Opposition. A fine copy, folio,  in the original plain glassine dust jacket. Woods D(b)70/2, Cohen D132

The third work is The Opening of the new Chamber of the HOUSE OF COMMONS 1950: an account of the opening ceremony on 26th October 1950. Contains 32 photographs of the ceremonies and the gifts to the new House of Commons. Green cloth, folio matching the previous item. This handsome illustrated volume commemorates the official “Opening of the New Chamber” by King George VI, accompanied by Queen Elizabeth and their daughters Princess Elizabeth (now HM Queen Elizabeth II) and Princess Margaret. It was Churchill’s insistence that the commons be rebuilt to the original designs of Sir Charles Barry, who had won the competition for rebuilding after the fire of 1834.  Signed on the preliminary flyleaf by Winston Churchill (leader of the opposition in 1950); Clement Atlee (then Prime Minister); the architect Sir Giles Gilbert Scott; the engineeer Dr. Oscar Faber; the Speaker of the Commons Clifton Brown; the Lord Chancellor Lord Jowitt and other officials. Woods D(b)79/2,  Cohen D144

Value for the three items above: $5,000


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