The Duke of Windsor’s letters show “parallels” to today’s fascination with royals

A collection of letters written on behalf of the Duke of Windsor to be sold at auction shows “parallels” to today’s public and press fascination with the royal family, says the auctioneer.

he private secretary of the duke, who is named “G. Bedford,” wrote the 14 letters on behalf of the Duke, known as Edward VIII until his abdication in 1936, from June 1937 to December 1939.

In one of the letters, Mr Bedford dismissed press reports that Edward was homesick while living in the US, adding that Britain had “humiliated and misrepresented” the Duke and his American wife, Wallis.

The letters were collected by Surrey royal fan Lillian Boraston and were recently found in a box of papers by her granddaughter, who asked not to be named.


The Duke of Windsor (Archive/PA)

They will be sold at the Catherine Southon Auctioneers and Valuers auction of antiques and collectibles on 8 February at Farleigh Court Golf Club in Selsdon, Surrey, with an estimated value of £300-£500.

Ms Southon said the letters showed “parallels” between Edward and today’s fascination with the royal family, particularly the Duke and Duchess of Sussex.

It comes amid episodes of Harry’s memoir Spare, which was officially released on Tuesday, and contains bombastic revelations about the royal family, his and Meghan’s acrimonious split from the royal family and his distrust of the press.

A letter dated 7 September 1937 reads: ‘His Royal Highness thanks you for the poem and your kind wishes, but at the same time asks me to assure you that the news that His Royal Highness is homesick is entirely unfounded.

“His Royal Highness would like me to add that, rumors aside in the press, it is not very likely that he would miss the country, which has tried in every possible way to humiliate itself and the Duchess of Windsor and misrepresent.”


The Duke and Duchess of Windsor at the Charters grounds in Sunninghill, Berkshire (Archive/PA)

Ms Southon said: “It’s amazing that these letters have just come to light and what parallels there are with the royal family today, whether it’s the Duke and Duchess of Sussex or the death of HRH the Queen last year, people are still totally fascinated.”

Ms Boraston’s granddaughter said: “My grandmother died when I was five years old but these letters were occasionally mentioned.

“They give a great insight into the Duke’s life in the 1930s, where he stayed, where he honeymooned, etc., all things that we would now learn from TV or social media.”

The letters are also accompanied by Mrs Boraston’s nine scrap albums of newspaper clippings relating to the Duke of Windsor from 1936-1941. The Duke of Windsor’s letters show “parallels” to today’s fascination with royals

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