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The most impressive engagement rings to come out of Downing Street

To date, fifty seven people have served as prime minister – fifty four men and three women.

There’s been some spectacular jewellery to come out of 10 Downing Street over the years – including Margaret Thatcher’s 18-carat gold and amethyst ring. Worn on the day that she became Prime Minister in 1979, the ring sold for a staggering £27,500 at an auction in 2019.

With the next UK election just days away, engagement ring specialists at Steven Stone have revealed everything you need to know about some of the most impressive engagement rings to have resided at 10 Downing Street.

Instagram: @10downingstreet

Carrie Johnson (Value: £50,000)

In February 2020, Boris Johnson and Carrie Symonds revealed they were engaged and expecting their first child together.

Featuring an oval-cut coloured stone and a frame of diamonds on a pave band, Carrie’s ring bears resemblance to Kate Middleton’s – though the central stone on Kate’s engagement ring is a blue sapphire, not a green emerald.

The ring was quickly identified as an antique piece, which perfectly suits Carrie’s environmentalist passions.

Other women to opt for emeralds include, fittingly, Jackie Kennedy, and Wallis Simpson.

Our leading engagement specialist, Maxwell Stone commented: “Featuring an oval cut emerald that looks to be 3.5 carats, Carrie’s ring is a real showstopper.

Not only is the emerald sat on a diamond pave band, but the diamonds appear to be marquise – a unique shape that incorporates the length of an oval-shaped diamond and the point of a pear-shaped diamond on both edges. The shape dates back to 1745, when King Louis XV requested a diamond to be shaped like the smile of his mistress.

I’d estimate its value to be £50,000.”

Clementine Churchill (Value: £15,000)

The first time Winston Churchill met his future wife, Clementine Ogilvy Hozier was at the Crewe House ball in 1904 and the meeting wasn’t a success. Unusually for him, Churchill was tongue-tied and they hardly spoke.

When they met again, however, at a dinner party in 1908, they got on rather better. They became engaged only a few months later, on Tuesday 11 August, when Churchill proposed to her while they were both staying at Blenheim Palace 

Clementine’s engagement ring – a large ruby with two diamonds – was one of the three that Winston’s father had given his mother.

Maxwell commented: “When Winston Churchill proposed to Clementine, he has the choice of three rings that his father has given his mother. He chose a 3 stone ring that features a 2.5 carat pear shaped Ruby centre stone – set in yellow gold, the magnificent Ruby is flanked by 2 diamonds that look to be 2 carats each.

With all of this in mind, I’d value the rings worth to be £15,000.”

Samantha Cameron (Value: £50,000)

Samantha Cameron and David Cameron married on 1st June 1996 at the Church of St. Augustine of Canterbury, East Hendred, England, five years before he was first elected as MP for Witney at the 2001 general election.

When it comes to Samantha’s engagement ring, she rarely wears it, instead opting for a standard wedding band.

Maxwell commented: “It’s incredibly rare to see Samantha Cameron wearing her engagement ring – the last time that we saw it in the spotlight was during her visit to Royal Deeside with husband (and ex prime minister) David Cameron in 2011.

It’s a shame that Samantha doesn’t wear her ring often as it’s a real stunner. Featuring round brilliant diamonds – the most expensive diamond cut – with cushion shoulders, I’d estimate it to be worth around £50,000.

Margaret Thatcher (Value: £15,000)

When Marget Thatcher got married to Denis Thatcher in 1951, he became the first prime ministerial spouse.

Margaret Thatcher had a real penchant for jewellery and sported an engagement ring that was fashioned from blue sapphire and diamond. 

Maxwell commented: “Blue was Margaret Thatcher’s power colour, so it’s no surprise that her engagement ring featured a blue round sapphire. In a cluster design and sat on white gold, her bold sapphire looked to be 2 carats.

With all of this in mind, I’d value the ring at £15,000.”

Cherie Blair (Value: £30,000)

In 1976, while she was studying to become a barrister, Cherie Blair met future prime minister and husband Tony Blair. The couple later married on 29th March 1980.

Commenting on Cherie’s unusual ring, Maxwell said: “Cherie’s engagement ring features a round diamond that looks to be 1.5 carats and is surrounded by a cluster of smaller diamonds.

Set on a 5mm yellow gold band, what’s particularly unusual about Cherie’s ring is that the round diamond is offset.

After a close look at Cherie’s ring, I’d estimate its value to be £30,000.”

Liz Truss (Value: £5,000)

The shortest-serving Prime Minister in UK history, Liz Truss’ time in office lasted just 49 days.

Liz Truss is married to accountant Hugh O’Leary, who she met in 1997 at a Tory Party conference. The couple tied the knot in 2000.

Maxwell commented: “Liz has always kept the details of her and Hugh’s wedding day private, and unfortunately, there are few photos of her engagement ring.

In the available images, Liz is seen wearing a yellow gold band adorned with a row of diamonds. A timeless choice, yellow gold bands continues to capture hearts.

I would estimate Liz’s minimalistic ring to be worth around £5,000.”

Akshata Murty (Value: £30,000)

Rishi Sunak’s wife, Akshata Murty, is an Indian heiress, businesswoman, fashion designer, and venture capitalist.

Having met in 2004 at Stanford University, the couple married in 2009.

Maxwell commented: “As one of Britain’s wealthiest women, it’s no surprise that Akshata Murty has an impressive engagement ring.

The centerpiece of Akshata’s ring is a stunning radiant cut diamond, elegantly set in a solitaire setting, which enhances its sparkle.

I would estimate the dazzling piece to be worth around £30,000.”

“While we always take notice of the jewellery celebrities are wearing, we tend to overlook the accessories and fashion choices of politicians.

There’s been some spectacular jewellery to come out of 10 Downing Street over the years, most of which boasts exquisite gemstones – such as Margaret Thatcher’s 18-carat gold and amethyst engagement ring, and Clementine Churchill’s three-stone ring, which features a 2.5-carat pear-cut ruby.

Some of the engagement rings have embraced a more classic style, featuring traditional diamonds. Although she rarely wears it, Samantha Cameron has a round cut diamond ring, while Liz Truss chose a simple yellow gold band adorned with diamonds.

The most valuable ring we’ve appraised belongs to Carrie Johnson. Worth £50,000, it features a 3.5-carat green emerald. The marquise-cut gemstone sits on a diamond pavé band.”

maxwell stone, creative director, steven stone

If you’re looking for some jewellery inspiration, why not take a look at our full collection? Whether you’re after a necklace osome diamond earrings, we’ve got you covered. We also have a vast range of engagement and wedding rings.

If you don’t see anything that takes your fancy, we also offer a bespoke service, where our designers will create a unique piece of jewellery that ticks all the boxes.

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