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Memories of The Coronation


I remember the TV programme about The Coronation. In fact, I remember nothing about the actual content of the programme, but I do remember the occasion.

There was only one family near us who had a TV set and lots of people went to their house to watch the programme. I don’t know how many people, but I remember there were lots and lots of people, all standing squashed into the back room because there were lots more people than seats and so we couldn’t sit down. We were all shoulder to shoulder.

The TV set was a little brown box high up on a shelf in the corner of the room. Perhaps it wasn’t as high up as I remember – I was only four and would not have been very tall! The room was dark – the curtains must have been drawn so that we could all see the little screen with its grey moving pictures. I don’t remember what the pictures on the screen were about. I only remember the flickering light coming from the little high-up box.

A lot of people were smoking – smoking was more common then. I could see the patterns of the smoke swirling about above me in the beam of light from the screen.

The whole occasion was very exciting, but the TV set was the new amazing, novel thing that I remember, not The Coronation. I probably wasn’t tall enough to see past all the people anyway...

It’s strange to think how just about everyone in this country has at least one TV set these days, but then TV was utterly extraordinary and memorable. I wonder how many other people have similar memories?

Hilary Stout

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