Six letters from Princess Diana to Cyril Dickman, given to him whilst he served as Head Palace Steward at Buckingham Palace, caused a real stir both inside and outside of the sale room.
Mr Dickman worked at the palace for over fifty years, starting his career watching out for fires on the roof during the Blitz. He was a favourite of every member of the Royal Family and this is evident by the variety of cards and letters he received. In 1993 Cyril was also advisor to Sir Anthony Hopkins for his role as a butler in the feature film ‘Remains of the Day’.
The collection consisted of approximately 40 lots with estimates ranging from £80-900. Some of the highlights of the collection which attracted both national and international interest included handwritten letters from Princess Diana to Cyril. One particularly touching letter from Diana to Cyril says….. 'Dear Cyril, it was so very kind of you to have sent us such a lovely card, on the arrival of our small son - we both were greatly touched by your thoughtfulness and enormously appreciated it. William adores his little brother and spends the entire time swamping Harry with an endless supply of hugs and kisses, hardly letting the parents near!...’ National and international bidding was keen for all lots in the collection and this particular letter sold for £3,200. These intimate personal letters highlight a time of much joy and happiness, which was shared with Cyril.
Some of the other items included letters, cards and photographs from various members of the Royal family, including Prince Charles and Princess Margaret, Queen Elizabeth II and Prince Philip, signed photographs, Christmas cards as well as wedding cake and Maundy money.
The six letters from Diana to Cyril made £15,000 and the complete Cyril Dickman Collection fetched £56,000.
Other highlights of the sale included an interesting group of medals and ephemera relating to the Leader and Pleydell-Bouverie family which made £28,000 and lot 192, Leonard Harry Wells, Portrait of Air Vice-Marshall Johnnie Johnson which fetched, £28,000.
Cheffins Fine Art Department is now accepting entries for the next Connoisseur’s Sale on the 6th July, entries close 26th April. The sale will include coins, medals, antique weapons, militaria, scientific instruments, antiquities, tribal art, taxidermy and Royal memorabilia.
For more information please contact Lisa Freeman-Bassett, PR Manager (Fine Art).