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'Keep calm' posters owned by Suffolk police officer estimated to sell for £6,000 at auction

Three original war-time posters urging Brits to ‘keep calm and carry on’ are expected to fetch £6,000 at auction.

The iconic prints, created by the Government in the build up to World War Two, were to be used in the event of an invasion from the Germans.

The three posters – in different sizes – were formerly the property of a police officer who was based in Suffolk just after the war ended.

The iconic phrase inspired many lookalikes. Picture: iStock
The iconic phrase inspired many lookalikes. Picture: iStock

They will go under the hammer in Newcastle on July 4, where they are expected to sell for £1,200, £2,000 and £3,000.

It was one of three posters drafted for the war, but was the only one never publicly displayed during the war.

The others – ‘Your Courage, Your Cheerfulness, Your Resolution will bring us Victory’ and ‘Freedom is in Peril. Defend it with all your Might’ – were widely distributed.

However, ‘Keep Calm, Carry On’ was held in reserve and was only ever intended to be used during severe crises, which did not immediately occur.

The iconic phrase spawned many lookalikes and other iterations have been used for a range of products.

Auctioneer Fred Wryley-Birch said the posters ‘encapsulate a pivotal moment in British history and stand as an inspiring message from the past’.