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Fine Modern & Antique Arms - March 2022

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Sale A0322 Lot 1351

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FORMERLY THE PROPERTY OF SIR EDWARD FIELDEN K.C.V.O., C.B., D.F.C., A.F.C.
J. PURDEY & SONS

A PAIR OF LIGHTWEIGHT 12-BORE ROUNDED-BAR SELF-OPENING SIDELOCK EJECTORS, serial no. 24378 / 9,
for 1933, 27in. nitro chopperlump barrels (No.1 replacements in 1994, No.2 reproved in 1994), the ribs gold-inlaid '1' and '2' at the breech ends and engraved 'J. PURDEY & SONS. AUDLEY HOUSE. SOUTH AUDLEY STREET. LONDON. ENGLAND.', No.1 spuriously signed and with 'NOT BY MAKER' engraved to the underside of right tube, No.2 wall thicknesses below recommended minimum and with denting and rivelling towards muzzles, 2 3/4in. chambers, bored approx. true cyl. and imp. cyl. choke, rounded bar actions with removable striker discs, toplevers engraved '1' and '2', automatic safeties with gold-inlaid 'SAFE' details, cocking-indicators, articulated front triggers, No.2 ejectors at fault, best fine acanthus scroll engraving with floral bouquets, retaining very slight traces of finish, 14 7/8in. figured replacement stock including 3/4in. leather covered recoil pad (No.1) and 14 3/4in. highly-figured replacement stock (No.2), weight 6lb. 10oz. (No.1) and 6lb. 7oz. (No.2), in a 'THE PURDEY LIGHTWEIGHT' leather double motor case, the lid initialled 'E.H.F.'

Provenance: The makers have kindly provided us with the following information:

No. 24378/9
Completed: 1933
For: Major V.P. Misa, of Heron Court, Epsom, Surrey
Description: A pair of lightweight hammerless ejector game guns
Weight: 6lb. 1oz.
Calibre: 12-bore
Barrels: 27in. Whitworth Steel
Choke: Cylinder & Modified
Stock: 13 3/4in.
Notes:
Rounded action-bars
Ovals engraved 'M'
According to the pattern book, originally finished in 1932 for C. Carey Druce, but do not appear to have been collected and the original entry has been pasted over.
October 1934: The guns were sold by C.B. Vaughans to Wing Commander E.H. Fielden, who had cheek pads and leather-covered recoil-pads fitted, bringing the length to 14 3/8 1/16in.
May 1964: New leather-covered Silver's recoil-pads fitted on account of Sir Edward Fielden.

Sir Edward Fielden K.C.V.O., C.B., D.F.C., A.F.C.

Wing Commander E.H. 'Mouse' Fielden (4th December 1903 - 6th November 1976) began his career in the RAF as a Pilot Officer in January 1924 and would rise to the rank of Air Vice Marshal by 1962.

In 1929 as a Flight Lt., he was chosen by the Prince of Wales (later King Edward VIII) to be his personal pilot, responsible for both flying and maintaining the Prince's Gypsy Moth. The Prince of Wales held the RAF rank of Air Chief Marshall, but on his accession to the throne in 1936, he became a Marshal of the Royal Air Force and was provided with an Airspeed Envoy as a communications aircraft and being on official inventory, a new unit 'The King's Flight' was created with 'Mouse' Fielden as Captain. With King Edward's abdication and the succession of King George V in 1936, Fielden was confirmed in his appointment and continued as Captain of the King's Flight.
During World War II the King's Flight continued to operate, initially as a Photographic Development Unit and then as a Photographic Reconnaissance Unit before being absorbed into No. 161 Sqn., with Fielden as Officer Commanding. 161 Squadron was tasked with the delivering and picking up agents from within enemy occupied territory, often low level night flights with extremely hazardous and sometimes even uncharted landing sites. It was during these operations he was awarded the Distinguished Flying Cross:
"Group Captain Edward Hedley FIELDEN, M.V.O., A.F.C.
This officer has flown on various operational missions, some of a most hazardous nature. He has displayed a high standard of operational efficiency, setting an example which has contributed materially to the high morale of the air crews under his command. His great organising ability has proved a valuable asset."
(London Gazette - 6 April 1943)

After the War, the King's Flight was reformed with Fielden once again in charge and promoted to Air Commodore. After the King's death in 1952, the Flight was renamed and Air Commodore Fielden remained as Captain of 'The Queen's Flight' until his retirement in January 1962, at which point he was promoted to Air Vice Marshal and also appointed as Senior Air Equerry to The Queen.







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Estimate £5,000-7,000

S2 - Sold as a Section 2 Firearm under the 1968 Firearms Act




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