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Churchill’s Harrow – Where it all began for our most famous Prime Minister

There have been 56 UK Prime Ministers, all of whom have helped to shape the country that we live in today. Inarguably, the most famous of all of these is Winston Churchill and, in this article, we’re looking at Churchill’s Harrow, where it all began.

Born in Blenheim Palace in 1874, Winston Leonard Spencer Churchill was the son of Randolph Henry Spencer Churchill and Lady Randolph Churchill.

On the 17th of April 1888, Winston Churchill became one of seven (so far) Prime Ministers to begin studies at the famous Harrow School. By his own admission, he was far from being the school’s top scholar and once wrote, “I was on the whole considerably discouraged by my school days”.

Churchill’s Harrow - Where it all began for our most famous Prime Minister Harrow Online
Young Winston Churchill.

It wasn’t all bad though as he did once win a school prize for reciting Macaulay’s ‘Lays of Ancient Rome’ from memory – an impressive feat as the poem runs for a staggering 1200 lines.

After attending Sandhurst, Winston Churchill joined the 4th Hussars and would serve as both soldier and journalist before going on to follow in his father’s footsteps and enter the world of politics.

In 1908, Churchill married Clementine Hozier – a happy marriage which would last until his death and the couple would go on to have five children – Randolph, Mary, Diana, Sarah and Marigold.

He became Prime Minister in 1940 and successfully (and charismatically) guided Britain through the second world war.  In December of that same year, Winston Churchill would pay a visit to his old seat of learning, Harrow School, where, during his visit, the students sang a song featuring the following lines to honour the country’s leader:

Nor less we praise in sterner days
The Leader of our Nation,
And CHURCHILL’s name shall win acclaim From each new generation.
While in this fight to guard the Right
Our country you defend, Sir.
Here grim and gay we mean to stay,
And stick it to the end, Sir.

Churchill’s Harrow - Where it all began for our most famous Prime Minister Harrow Online
Winston_Churchill, 1941 photo by Yousuf_Karsh

Winston served as Prime Minister until 1945 when he lost the General Election. He would, however, serve again in the top job between 1951 and 1955. Famous for his love of rich food, Scotch, brandy, champagne and cigars, Winston’s health would deteriorate and his leadership would end in his resignation – after which he was afforded the unheard of honour of hosting Queen Elizabeth II and the Duke of Edinburgh for dinner at his home.

Winston Churchill died in 1965 at the age of 90 and was given a state funeral at St. Paul’s Cathedral. He is buried at St. Martin’s Church, Bladon.