King Charles' Coronation chairs sold for charity
2023/11/09

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Four of the chairs specially made for the Coronation of King Charles have been auctioned for charity, including supporting the homeless.

The historic chairs raised £32,760 at an auction at Christie's in London.

The oak chairs were used by royal guests and dignitaries sitting at the front at the Coronation service in Westminster Abbey in May.

Royal souvenir hunters will be able to buy more of the chairs, with almost all the set of 100 chairs to be sold later.

It might be seen as the ultimate in impressing the neighbours, but the chairs, with only one previous careful owner, should raise a significant six-figure figure sum for charity.

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There are further auctions for eight more of the chairs in New York and Paris this week and then private sales for almost all the remaining chairs.

The charities sharing the proceeds will be the homeless charity Emmaus, the domestic violence charity SafeLives, the Prince's Trust and the Prince's Foundation.

One pair of chairs was bought in London on Tuesday for £18,900 and the other for £13,860, much higher than the £4,000 estimate originally set by the auction house.

The 100 specially-commissioned chairs, with blue velvet upholstery and the monograms of the King and Queen, were added to the usual seating in the Abbey. Although buyers won't know which royal or famous guest might have been occupying their particular chair.

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Prince William and Catherine, Prince Harry, Prince Edward and Sophie, Princess Anne and Prince Andrew were among those using these chairs, made by the Rugby-based furniture maker NEJ Stevenson.

But it won't have been King Charles, who was crowned in the which had been carefully restored for the ceremony.

There were 2,200 guests in the Abbey, including international heads of state, former prime ministers, religious leaders and celebrities.

The cash raised from the sale of the chairs will help the work of Emmaus, which runs 30 centres providing accommodation and training for homeless people.

This month the charity warned of a chronic shortage of affordable housing and rising numbers of rough sleepers.

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The Coronation chair sale is for a charity fundraiser, but there is also a steady trade in other royal-related memorabilia.

A Range Rover once used by the late Queen Elizabeth is coming up for auction and an adapted golf buggy, used when the Queen visited Chelsea Flower Show, didn't reach its sale price at auction earlier this year.

You can see more royal stories each week in the free BBC Royal Watch newsletter - . or .

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