On the afternoon of November 21, 1891 the 16 year-old Churchill, then a student at Harrow, went with his mother Lady Randolph and his brother Jack to the wedding of his aunt Lady Sarah Churchill and Captain Gordon C. Wilson. The wedding was held at St. George’s Church at Hanover Square, London. Afterwards a reception was held at the Dowager Duchess’s residence at Grosvenor Square. Unfortunately for Churchill he had to leave and return to Harrow “just as the fun was commencing.”
Fifty-two years later, on November 21, 1943, the now Prime Minister Churchill and his party arrived in Egypt for the start of the Cairo Conference. They disembarked from the HMS Renown, which had carried them from Plymouth, at Alexandria and immediately flew to Cairo. They landed at a desert airfield near the Pyramids. Having accepted the offer of using the villa of Richard Casey, the Minister Resident in the Middle East, as his residence during the conference, Churchill immediately held an interview with Supreme Commander, South-East Asia Louis Mountbatten and met with Chinese leader Chiang Kai Shek. Although he considered the presence of the Chinese at the Cairo Conference to be a distraction, Churchill later recalled he was impressed with Chiang’s “calm, reserved, and efficient personality.” After Chiang departed, the prime minister held a further meeting with Mountbatten. At dinner that evening, Churchill was again joined by Mountbatten as well as Casey, Charles Portal, Sholto Douglas, Alan Brooke, Jumbo Wilson, and Hastings Ismay. They remained at the dinner table for five hours, until two o’clock in the morning, discussing matters.