LOOKING BACK - March 31 edition

Children enjoying the Coronation pageant
Children enjoying the Coronation pageant

Coronation pageant

Seeing our recent photograph of boys from Elborow School (February 25 edition) reminded Jackie Hinks of a picture taken in Coronation year when she was at Pennington Street School – for 5-8 year olds who then went to Chapel Street or Elborow.

The boys she recognised in the Elborow picture were Keith Hibberd, who later became a neighbour in Bath Street, my second cousin, Roger Garratt, David Clowes who later went to Dunsmore School, and Alan Nicholls.

Jackie’s picture is of a group who did an English Country dance display in the Coronation Pageant, which took place at St. Matthew’s Infants’ School and the children in it are: Pat Beech (or maybe Birch) Isobel Mann, unknown, unknown, the ‘boys’ standing behind them are: Unknown, Jackie Williams (now Hinks), unknown, ? Sheffield, and Alan Nicholls. Jackie can’t remember the name of the boy whose place she took, but for the dancing she had been cast as everybody’s understudy – girls and boys alike!

In the Pageant Roger Garratt played the part of St. George and Jackie wonders if there is anyone out there with a picture of him?

“We dressed up in all manner of fancy dress, sang patriotic songs, did country dancing, and I remember – with mild envy – the green dress of the girl who was a sort of ‘Mistress of Ceremonies’; it was embroidered all over with daffodils, thistles, roses and shamrock,” she said.

“In those days of true austerity it was joy to behold. I think her name was Jacqueline Tolcher. Are there any photographs of anyone else in the pageant, apart from my one reminder of an afternoon over 60 years ago when I wore a pale blue taffeta dress suit, white shirt and bow tie and danced ‘The Sir Roger De Coverley’ or ‘The Irish Washerwoman’?.”