Never-before-seen pictures of Queen and Prince Philip to go on sale

The rare images are part of a lot going under the hammer in June. (Anthony Buckley)
The rare images are part of a lot going under the hammer in June. (Anthony Buckley & Constantine Ltd)

Rare pictures of the Queen and Prince Philip taken before a royal tour in 1961 are set to go under the hammer at auction.

The images show the Queen and her consort in the Blue Drawing Room at Buckingham Palace on 19 October 1960, before their tour in India and Pakistan the following year.

The full collection of 26 images includes some which are believed to never have been published before.

They were taken by Anthony Buckley, a royal photographer who died in 1993. They were his first sitting with the monarch and her husband.

rare photos by Anthony Buckley 1960
The images were taken by Anthony Buckley in 1960 as the couple prepared for a tour in India. (Anthony Buckley & Constantine Ltd)

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They are titled "For First publication in Morning Newspapers of Monday, 16th January, 1961" and the label reads: “H.M. Queen Elizabeth II. This new study by Anthony Buckley is issued in connection with the forthcoming Royal Tour of India and Pakistan; the Queen and Prince Philip leave London for India on January 20th, 1961.”

The photos were kept by Buckley and then passed on to his fellow royal photographer and business partner Alan Shawcross, who has put them up for auction to raise money for Cancer Research UK.

He said: "Because they knew they would be going into the finest places during the tour, the brief was to show as much of the grand setting of Buckingham Palace as possible.

"The album is a one-off. There’s nothing like it. I’m pretty sure some of the photographs in it have never been reproduced anywhere."

rare photos by Anthony Buckley 1960
They were taken in the Blue Drawing Room in Buckingham Palace. (Anthony Buckley & Constantine Ltd)
rare photos by Anthony Buckley 1960
The Queen wears a long white gown, sash and tiara in the images, some of which have not been reproduced before. (Anthony Buckley & Constantine Ltd)

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The Queen was 34 at the time, and Prince Philip was 39.

The collection features some of the couple together as well as individual shots. Prince Philip is pictured in full dress naval uniform as Admiral of the Fleet, and both adorned with the Order of the Garter.

The Queen also wearing memorial brooches for her father, King George VI, and grandfather, King George V.

The tour took them to India and Pakistan as well as Nepal and Iran and they were away for seven weeks.

Anthony Buckley
The couple wore the Order of the Garter in the images and the Queen had on memorial brooches for her father and grandfather. (Anthony Buckley & Constantine Ltd)
Anthony Buckley
Philip, who was 39 at the time, wore the full dress naval uniform as Admiral of the Fleet. (Anthony Buckley & Constantine Ltd)

Buckley first opened a studio in London in 1937 and became known for portraits of leading actors. He photographed people like Kenneth Williams, Virginia McKenna, Alec Guinness and Carol Reed during his career.

Shawcross and Buckley first met on an assignment in Buckingham Palace, with Shawcross recalling: "We went to photograph the Duke of Edinburgh one morning in 14 different uniforms, each linked to his honorary or senior role, whether military or naval. I was stationed alongside the Duke and it was my job to hold the swords and hats."

Last year, nine portrait photographs by Buckley of the Queen, dating to 1963 and taken for use on Canadian banknotes, took £13,000 at auction.

They were described as "probably one of a handful of examples of Buckley's prowess in private hands".

Anthony Buckley
The Duke of Edinburgh died in April at the age of 99. Before his royal duties he had a blossoming naval career and maintained links through his life. (Anthony Buckley & Constantine Ltd)
Anthony Buckley, in an image taken by Alan Shawcross. (Alan Shawcross)
Anthony Buckley, in an image taken by Alan Shawcross. (Alan Shawcross)

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Shawcross, a royal photographer in his own right, explained of the process of photographing a royal: "You have to be deferential to a degree but you also have to be in control and that requires a certain degree of boldness."

He said of Buckley: "Buckley was very proper and upright. I think he was a brilliant photographer.

"As quite a sensitive man, he was able to communicate well with his sitters and this allowed him to be gently persuasive in showing them to their advantage, which is essential for success as a portrait photographer.

"The sheer quality of his prints stands out. Nearly all black and white, they are of a very high order and exquisite."

The album will be auctioned through Ewbanks on 18 June, and is thought to be worth between £1,000 and £2,000.

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