Memories of Queen Elizabeth II’s coronation resurface ahead of son’s crowning
As Queen Elizabeth II’s son, King Charles, prepares for his own coronation on May 6th, memories of the young queen’s coronation in 1953 resurface.
Twelve individuals who witnessed the historic event, including Pamela Tawse and Brenda Piper, shared their vivid recollections with Reuters.
Tawse, who was just 18 and had just finished her night shift as a nurse, joined the massive crowds in central London hoping to catch a glimpse of the young queen.
The memory that stood out for her was the thunderous roar of the crowds as the queen approached.
Tawse had decorated hospital bedpans with red, white, and blue tape, in celebration of the new head of the royal family.
For Piper, who slept on the pavement to secure a good view of the procession, the sense of amazement at the spectacle was overwhelming.
Piper recalls that the coronation marked the beginning of a new era, from coffee bars to spaghetti bolognese, and mini skirts. She sees it as a pivotal moment in British history.
Both women were among the estimated three million people who lined the procession route in London, watched on television for the first time, or followed from the British colonies.
The coronation was a chance for the country to celebrate and show off its opulence and glamour, despite still enduring rationing after World War II.
As King Charles prepares for his coronation, the memories of the young queen’s coronation in 1953 are a reminder of the traditions and pageantry of the British monarchy, and the excitement and optimism that comes with the beginning of a new reign.