On Wednesday 24th July WI members from all over the county came to celebrate Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth’s Coronation in 1953. Purely by chance it coincided this week with the birth of Prince George of Cambridge and members wish to pass on their best wishes to the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge on this happy occasion.
The speaker for the afternoon was Morag, Dowager Lady Stafford. Her claim to fame, amongst other things, was that she was the youngest member of the peerage to be present at the Coronation. She was twenty years old. She regaled members with her memories of the day. Apparently the peers and peeresses had to be assembled in Westminster Abbey by 8.30 a.m. and were not allowed to go to the toilet until after the ceremony. There was also a strict rule that no food was to be consumed on the day, but a considerable amount of rubbish had to cleared away from the seats afterwards. Lady Stafford said that the journey to the Abbey had been an anxious one as their car did not arrive on time. Lord Stafford was worried about walking in Chelsea in his Coronation robes as it was not a particularly nice area in the 1950s.
Lady Stafford answered questions from the audience and one lady was interested in the jewellery she wore. This was inherited from Mrs. Fitzherbert who was married to King George IV although the marriage was never recognised by the government.
Members had brought along memorabilia. A Coronation mug found its way back to its roots and someone remembered winning a competition to go to the cinema and a celebration tea afterwards.
A very enjoyable afternoon was had by all and we were served with a high tea. Thanks were expressed to the members of Weston Coyney WI who catered for the event.