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Winston Churchill’s old cigar butt sells for £4,000 at auction

Winston Churchill's cigar butt, Winston Churchill smoking a cigar. Winston Churchill's cigar butt has sold for more than £4,000.
Experts originally predicted that the cigar would sell for £800 (Pictures: PA)

A cigar butt that Sir Winston Churchill threw away in the 1940s has been sold for more than £4,000. 

The wartime leader famously smoked between eight and 10 cigars a day, often chewing them until they were gummy and gnarled. He discarded one of these butts years ago and a police officer picked it up. 

The cop passed it on to his grandson, Arthur Church, who put it under the hammer on Wednesday. 

The almost 80-year-old butt went for a staggering £4,270 after buyer’s premium – to cover the cost of the auction – was added to its hammer price of £3,500. 

Auctioneers at company Bellmans, based in Wisborough Green, West Sussex, were shocked as experts had originally predicted the 7cm butt would fetch just £800. 

The former prime minister apparently developed his cigar habit while he was serving in Cuba for the British military. 

He became known for the cloud of smoke he almost always left in his wake, as he puffed away through meetings, work and even meals. 

Winston Churchill's cigar butt. Winston Churchill's cigar butt has sold for more than £4,000.
Winston Churchill often chewed on his cigars, leaving the butts mangled (Picture: PA)
Winston Churchill smoking a cigar in military uniform. Winston Churchill's cigar butt has sold for more than £4,000.
Sir Winston famously smoked between eight and 10 cigars a day (Picture: Getty Images)

It was rumoured that his wife, Clementine, created a type of bib for him to wear in bed so his cigar ash and alcohol did not ruin his clothes. 

But the makeshift bib did not work and Sir Winston’s clothes often had to be mended.

This is not the first time fans have shown their willingness to fork out for something the wartime hero owned. 

His luxury velvet slippers, embroidered with his initials, went for £39,040 in March. 

A private UK collector bought them for the eye-watering price, even after it was predicted the slippers would fetch between £10,000 and £15,000.

The same auction saw Sir Winston’s brandy glass, thought to sell for between £7,000 and £10,000, bring in £18,300. 

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