We’re super excited for the King’s Coronation on Saturday 6th May, Chloe has her Union Jack mug out in preparation, Nigel’s been raving about the street party he’ll be attending, whilst I’ve had my eye on our new Union Jack sunglasses for a while now.
That’s right, we’ve released a brand new Coronation product range that’ll help you to celebrate King Charles’ Coronation with all the pomp and pageantry it deserves. Alongside launching the new range, I’ve been looking further into the King’s upcoming coronation, what’s planned for the day and how different the country was the last time we hosted such an event.
What Life Was Like During The Last Coronation
It’s been so long since Queen Elizabeth II’s Coronation back in 1953 (70 years!) and the country and the world as a whole has changed a lot in that time. But just how different was it back then? I’ve gathered a few interesting facts that highlight just how times have changed!
Everyone Huddled Around The TV
The Queen’s Coronation was one of the first big events to be broadcast live on television and is widely heralded as the event that ushered in television becoming more mainstream. Many people decided to rent or buy television sets for the Coronation and the number of licence holders doubled from approximately 1.5 million to 3 million. Compare that to the 25 million approximate licence holders in the UK today and you can see how television has become increasingly integral to our day to day lives.
Food Rationing Was Still in Place
At the start of the Second World War, Britain was importing a large amount of its food (we actually import a smaller percentage today) and one of the strategies of the Germans was to attack supply ships to try and starve Britain into submission. As a result of these shortages, the British Government brought in rationing for various products to make sure everyone had enough of everything to get by.
By 1953, there was still rationing in place on a number of items such as sugar, meat and coal, whilst just before the Queen’s coronation, the rationing of sweets and chocolate ended. I’m not going to lie, I wouldn’t have coped without my choccie!
Fourth Coronation in Just Over 30 Years
We were so used to Queen Elizabeth II being our Queen that we forget that it hasn’t always been so commonplace to have the same Monarch for so long. There will have been many people at her coronation that were witnessing their fourth that century! Elizabeth’s in 1953 followed on from King Edward VII’s in 1902, King George V’s in 1911 and King George VI’s in 1937.
Homosexuality Was Illegal
Now this is awful and almost impossible to believe but unfortunately, homosexuality was indeed illegal back in 1953 and would be so in England until 1967. Compare that with today where same-sex marriage is commonplace and there are numerous fantastic Pride events celebrated worldwide! We’re a proud supporter of the LGBTQ+ community and believe that love comes in every colour, so the world is a better place today in this regard for sure!
There Were No Motorways
The first motorway, The Preston bypass which is now part of the M6 was built in 1958. So during the Queen’s coronation, everyone was getting around on A and B roads. Can you imagine how long it would have taken to go on holiday to the seaside back then? It’s long enough now!
What’s Planned For King Charles’ Coronation?
Saturday 6th May
- King Charles and Queen Camilla will travel in the Diamond Jubilee State Coach as part of the King’s Procession to Westminster Abbey in time for the service to start at 11am.
- During the ceremony the monarch will pledge to be the ‘defender of the faith’ but the coronation oath will be updated to reflect the Britain of today.
- The Archbishop will then anoint, bless and consecrate Charles and he’ll be given the orb and sceptre before St Edward’s Crown is placed upon his head, officially making him King Charles III.
- King Charles III and Queen Camilla will then return to the palace in the same Gold State Coach that his Mother, the late Queen Elizabeth II travelled in during her Coronation. Hopefully he won’t need a hot water bottle like her Majesty did back in 1953!
- Then to conclude the day’s events, various members of the Royal Family will appear on the balcony of Buckingham Palace in front of the vast crowds that will no doubt gather below them.
Sunday 7th May
- A special Coronation Concert will take place at Windsor Castle and will be broadcast live by the BBC.
- The concert will see a world class orchestra play interpretations of musical favourites whilst the stars that made them perform. It’s all very hush hush in regards to who will be performing though, I wonder who will be there!
- Neighbours and communities are encouraged to get together and take part in the Coronation Big Lunch. Street parties are highly encouraged, but so is a nice cuppa tea with your next door neighbour, whatever takes your fancy.
Monday 8th May
- Everyone is encouraged to take part in ‘The Big Help Out’ and try out some volunteering for themselves. If you’re looking to help some good causes, check out their website and download their app to see what is being organised near you.
- The extra bank holiday this year is much appreciated, your Majesty. Let’s hope we get some lovely sunshine to enjoy too!
Looking To Organise Your Own King’s Coronation Event?
If you’re looking to take part in the celebrations and the Coronation Big Lunch, our Coronation range has a number of items to help you celebrate in style.
Why not incorporate some colour powder into your celebrations? Our safe to use powder is available in Regal Red, Royal Blue and White (amongst other colours) so it’s the perfect addition to your celebration. Just maybe wait until everyone is finished eating their food!
We also have a number of Union Jack themed products such as flags, whistles and sunglasses which will help everyone to get in the mood.
You know what, I’ve decided that I’m definitely going to grab myself some of those sunglasses, they’re so cool! Enjoy the celebrations guys!