Churchill in Madeira
That the British Prime Minister and Nobel Prize Winner in Literature, Sir Winston Churchill, spent his holidays in Madeira, in January of 1950?
Winston Churchill, the well-known British Prime Minister during World War II, spent 12 days vacationing in Madeira, in January of 1950, and left its imprint in the region’s tourism.
Reid's Palace Hotel addressed the invitation in the summer of 1949, to mark its reopening following World War II and Winston Churchill arrived at the island on 1st January, 1950 aboard the Durban Castle ship. He was accompanied by his wife, his eldest daughter and two secretaries, a concierge, a body-guard and by Colonel Frederick Deakin, his councillor in the writing of his memoires.
On 8th January, 1950, he went to Câmara de Lobos, seven kilometres west of Funchal, in a Rolls Royce owned by the Leacock family. At the village entrance, he set up his easel and canvas, sat down and painted the bay and the islet. Photographer Raul Perestrelo immortalised this moment and the location is currently known as the Winston Churchill Viewpoint.
This illustrious visitor should have remained in Madeira until the 16th January, however he changed his return to the 12th, due to the forthcoming general elections in England, due in February of that year. He left the island aboard a hydroplane of the English company Aquila Airways, his wife and daughter having returned on the originally scheduled date.