Special forces watch of Royal origins up for grabs


Fellows is auctioning off a watch with a top secret military history and Royal origins later this month.

The trench watch was a gift from King Edward VIII (then the Prince of Wales) to Lt. Col. John Derrick Hignett for his service as Equerry. Lt. Col. Hignett commanded the top secret communication and intelligence GHQ Liaison Regiment, also known as the Phantom regiment, during World War II.

The commanding officer also took part in military operations in North Africa and Northern European alongside fellow Phantom Regiment member, Hollywood actor David Niven.


The only battle scars the 1912 watch bears are a few cracks to the enamel dial. It is also inscribed on the reverse, “Y.R.H” with the Prince of Wales feathers, while the name “J.D Hignett, 10th Hussars” is marked on the cuvette. Lt. Col. Hignett died in 1994.

The watch, lot 484 in Fellows monthly Watch Sale on October 27th, has an estimate of £200-£300.

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Editor of WatchPro, the WatchPro Hot 100 and The Luxury Report.


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