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E J Churchill shotguns in disguise?

I wouldn’t normally discuss a clients guns, however we’ve been given the task of retailing several of this clients guns. To that end I must give them the justice they deserve. To do that I have to give you the back story of two of the guns in his collection, they are unique, complete one offs, or are they?

Many will know that E J Churchill were based in Bath St, Birmingham’s Gun Quarter during the 1970’s. At that time they were making several guns, including the XXV boxlock with Churchill rib, the beautiful Imperial sidelock amongst other models. At that time, the actions were made by Harry Hill (an outworker to Churchill) and the locks were made by E Shilton & Son (Another outworker to Churchill), both Mr Hill and Mr Shilton were at the very top of their game and also outworked for several other notable brands, not just those in Birmingham either. The quality of these mens work was and still is revered amongst the very best gunmakers in the industry.

Mr Brown, trained in dentistry at the dental hospital just across the A38 flyover from Bath St. Like most students he enjoyed a tipple or two and frequented the Gunmakers Arms in Bath St, Birmingham. As we did prior to mobile phones, Mr Brown actually talked to strangers in pubs, anyway Mr Brown became acquainted with a number of people in the gun trade including Mr Hill & Mr Shilton and that acquaintanceship gradually turned into a long standing friendship between the three gents.

As time went on, Mr Brown became increasingly interested in art of Gunmaking and asked his newly acquainted friends to make guns for him that bear his name, ‘G T Brown’.

In these two shotguns we have what is effectively a E J Churchill Imperial sidelock and a best quality boxlock with Churchill rib, yet they bear the name ‘G T Brown’. The sidelock with 28″ barrels measuring 0.731 and 0.730 in the bore and wall thickness of 36 thou at a minimum, currently choked 1/2 and 3/4. The boxlock with 28″ barrels measuring 0.731 and 0.732 in the bore and wall thickness of 33 thou at a minimum, currently choked 1/2 and Full. The barrel filing is first class and the guns in general are in perfect order, however how do you value them? Does the uniqueness add or detract to the value? I’d love to know your thoughts on this.



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  • Alex Sayer says:

    What an interesting story thank you for sharing.

  • Alex Sayer says:

    Personally I think it keeps the value around the same x

  • Peter Croft says:

    The boxlock looks very much like a Hercules. Is it an assisted opener? For much of Churchill’s time the Hercules was the second most expensive gun in the Churchill line up. It was built to the same quality as the Premiere and retailed at a higher price than the Imperial and Field sidelocks. Sadly “best” boxlocks don’t command a price commensurate with their quality. The unusual ‘back story’might add some value to these guns, they are a little bit different.