News | July 4, 2024

Landlord and Tenancy Agreement Signed by Freddie Mercury Leads Autographs and Memorabilia Sale

Chiswick Auctions

Freddie Mercury agreement

The 1986 typed document signed by both the Queen frontman and his former girlfriend Mary Austin went for £6,930 in the latest Autographs and Memorabilia sale at Chiswick Auctions. Dated 17 June 1986, the legal licence references "the building known as 12 Stafford Terrace, London, W8", the house where Freddie Mercury lived before moving to his final home, Garden Lodge in Kensington. The document is signed twice by Mercury as the director of Goose Productions Limited and once by Mary Georgina Austin in her capacity of secretary of the company.

A touching wartime letter written by Queen Elizabeth II as a young princess brought £1,512. The letter, written from Windsor Castle on August 26, 1940, to Lady Astor, included a small black and white photograph showing Buckingham Palace at night that the future queen had promised to return to a Canadian soldier in convalescence at Cliveden.  It reads: "I am so sorry not to have sent the photograph before but here it is at last. I do hope the soldier has not gone away. It was entirely my fault that the photograph was not returned at once and I do hope he will forgive me." The photograph is signed to the back for both Princess Elizabeth and Princess Margaret and annotated by Elizabeth "Buckingham Place floodlit, May 1935, given to me by Bobby in London, 1940".

The vendor's father was the recipient of the picture and the letter. A member of the Canadian Army, 1st Division, Signal Corps, he had met both Princess Elizabeth and Princess Margaret when hospitalised on the Cliveden estate. The vendor recalled: “My father had some pictures on his bed which included the picture of Buckingham Palace. Princess Elizabeth asked if she could borrow the picture to show her father the King and later returned it with a letter of apology for the delay.".

Other highlights included:

* the signature of the Saudi Arabian statesman Faisal bin Abdulaziz Al Saud (1906-75), King of Saudi Arabia from 1964 until his assassination in 1975, who had signed and dated a full-length printed portrait when an emir and diplomat in the 1920s. It was sold for £6,048 together with a similar signed portrait of the British politician George Villiers, 6th Earl of Clarendon. 

* a lined index card with the signatures of all four Beatles sold for £6,300 while a scarce early Parlophone publicity card signed on the reverse in blue ink by George Harrison, Ringo Starr, Paul McCartney and John Lennon, c. 1962-63 made £8,190

* 17 Agent Provocateur Eau de Parfum bottles signed backstage at the Brit Awards 2008 including Paul McCartney, Amy Winehouse, Mark Ronson, Leona Lewis, Beth Ditto and the Kaiser Chiefs sold as a single lot for £1,890

* a classic vintage head and shoulders photograph of Audrey Hepburn from the 1960s inscribed "To Marina, Every good wish, Audrey Hepburn" sold for £4,032 while two previously unseen polaroids taken and signed by Andy Warhol made £4,788