17/04/2012 06:14 BST

Aquascutum, Historic Brand That Clothed Churchill And Queen Mother, To Go Into Administration (PICTURES)

Aquascutum, the historic British clothing brand which has clad Winston Churchill and the Queen Mother in its erstwhile trenchcoats is on the brink of collapse.

Administrators could soon be called in to the 160-year-old British clothing retailer, after its owner Harold Tillman sold a majority stake yesterday to its sister company Jaeger, for only marginally more than the company's level of debt.

Around 250 jobs are at stake, and though Tilland invested around £20 million in Aquascutum after purchasing it in 2009, the Financial Times understands he can no longer afford to support its losses.

Aquascutum was founded in 1851 by tailor John Emary. He patented the technique of water-proofing wools and reportedly was the first tailor to introduce the cloth in his designs. Aquascutum is a fusion of the Latin words for water (aqua) and shield (scutum).

In its early days it was best known for a style of trenchcoat worn during the First World War, after the company was commissioned by the government to design coats for British soldiers

Lady Thatcher has also been pictured in the company's designs, as well as Humphrey Bogart and Cary Grant. Glamourous Hollywood stars such as Sophia Loren and Greta Garbo also favoured the British stalwart. Take a look at some of their classic shots below.