Theresa May's bracelet 'very possibly' the same one worn by Margaret Thatcher

Francesca Specter
Yahoo Style UK deputy editor
Margaret Thatcher (left) and Theresa May (right) wearing gemstone bracelets – but are they the same? [Photo: Getty]

Theresa May has been pictured wearing a gemstone bracelet very similar to one previously owned by Margaret Thatcher, which recently sold at auction for £40,000.

The former Prime Minister, 62, exited Downing Street on Wednesday this week alongside husband Philip, 61.

As she waved goodbye to crowds, she was photographed wearing a bracelet just like one owned by her predecessor.

Thatcher, the UK’s first female PM, was given the hardstone ‘pebble’ as a gift from her husband Denis.

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She wore it on a number of occasions, including her first day serving as Prime Minister in 1979 and when she met Nelson Mandela in 1990.

Margaret Thatcher Attends David Frost's annual summer party in Chelsea in 2004 [Photo: Getty]

Thatcher, who served as Prime Minister of the United Kingdom from 1979 to 1990, died of a stroke on 8 April 2013.

Several of her belongings were auctioned off by Christie’s earlier this year between the 2nd and 8th of May, with the sale total including buyer’s premium amounting to £1,087,750.

The auction included Thatcher’s hardstone “pebble” bracelet, which contains a series of different stones, according to the listing description: “Vari-shaped cabochons, banded agate, jasper, nephrite jade, pale blue/grey chalcedony, tiger’s eye and pale purple chalcedony”.

It was expected to be sold for £2,500. However, it was purchased for an unprecedented amount of £40,000 by a mystery buyer, according to the listing on the Christie’s website.

It is now the property of a “private individual”.

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A representative for Christie’s told Yahoo UK they can provide “no further information” on the buyer.

So is it possible that May’s bracelet, worn yesterday, is actually the same one owned by Thatcher?

Former British Prime Minister Theresa May makes her outgoing statement alongside husband Philip May at Downing Street. [Photo: Getty]

David Johnson, owner of Rex Johnson & Sons Birmingham, told Yahoo UK: "From examining the shape of the stones and the pattern of the links, it is very possible that Theresa May's bracelet is in fact from Margaret Thatcher’s collection.

“The shape of the Tiger’s eye stone is exactly the same in both pieces of jewellery. In the photo of May, you can also identify that the stone pattern is indeed in the right succession, with the Tiger's eye being in between the pale blue/grey calcedony and pale purple calcedony.”

He added: “We have seen similar styled pieces from this era, but I can confidently say that these were not mass-produced for a high street jeweller. This along with the fact that Theresa May has consciously created a strong connection between herself and Margaret Thatcher only further confirms my suspicion that it is very likely from the Thatcher collection.”

An 18 carat gold and amethyst ring frequently worn by Thatcher was also auctioned off for more than anticipated. The estimate sale price was between £1,200 and £1,800, but the piece actually realised £27,500.

Britain's former Prime Minister Theresa May watches the proceedings with colleague former Justice Secretary and Lord Chancellor David Gauke on the second day of the first cricket test match. [Photo: Getty]

The auction marked the 40th anniversary of Thatcher’s election. Thatcher and May have so far been the only two female Prime Ministers in UK history.

May wore yet another statement bracelet as she attended day two of the Specsavers test match between England and Ireland at Lord’s Cricket Ground yesterday.

It was a wide cuff which featured the image of Mexican artist Frida Kahlo, who is well-known for her self portraits.