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Remembering the Coronation 1953

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As we approach the Coronation of King Charles III on 6th May 2023, how many of us can cast our minds back to that last Coronation?

Our late Queen Elizabeth II was Crowned in Westminster Abbey on 2nd June 1953 at the age of 25. Hers was the first British coronation to be televised in full.

TV cameras had not been allowed inside the abbey during the 1937 Coronation of her father, George VI. Only the procession was shown on the BBC Television Service – the first outside broadcast for this fledgling organisation which had only launched in November 1936. There was, however, a 40 camera film crew inside the Abbey and its edited highlights were shown as a newsreel in cinemas across the then British Empire.

Skip forward 16 years and against the advice of her Prime Minister, Winston Churchill, Elizabeth insisted the whole event be broadcast live. Twenty seven million people across Britain watched it on the BBC on television sets specially purchased or rented for the occasion. It is said an average of 17 people gathered around to watch each TV.

How the world (and TV sets) has changed. In the 1950's you would probably have watched the Coronation on a big wooden box with a 12.5" screen fronting a cathode ray tube as deep as it was wide. Or perhaps listened to it on your wireless.

Curry Rivel Online would love to hear about your memories of the day and how you watched or listened to the event. Who with, and where?

Wouldn't it be nice to capture those childhood memories, gather them together and remember as you celebrate this next Coronation where you celebrated the last one, 70 years ago.

Just a line will do – send it to

And 'stay tuned' for news of village events planned for the Coronation Weekend 2023.

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