Letter: A tribute to Prince Philip

This letter sent to the Star was written by Barbara Betts, Robertson Road, Walkley, Sheffield, S6

By Barbara Betts
Thursday, 22nd April 2021, 6:33 am
Updated Thursday, 22nd April 2021, 6:34 am
The Queen and Prince Philip on a visit to Sheffield in 1954
The Queen and Prince Philip on a visit to Sheffield in 1954

Just thought your readers would like to hear about the Royal visit by Her Royal Highness Queen Elizabeth II and His Royal Highness The Duke of Edinburgh to Sheffield in October, 1954.

I was a pupil at Coleridge Road Secondary School for Girls and was one of many pupils chosen to be included in the display which was to be done at Sheffield Wednesday Football Ground to welcome the Queen and Prince Philip to Sheffield, we had to learn a marching sequence.

We practised, boys and girls for weeks to get it perfect. The pitch was marked out at the bottom of the boys’ school yard which was just down from the girls’ school.

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There was an opening between the boys’ and girls’ school. Strict rules were that you are not allowed to mix or talk to the boys (except for special occasions); if you did you were sent to the headmistress, Miss Dickman and had the cane. By gum it hurt, but you never told your parents.

A number of schools were chosen to take part.

On the day of the visit we were all taken to the Sheffield Wednesday Ground – in all around 43,000 children was there.

At first a display of welcome was done by other pupils, then it was our turn to do the display of the flag – 3,000 pupils all started marching.

When we had finished all pupils bent over (every pupil had on a tee shirt, our schools was red other schools had white or blue), by pupils bending over the colours made the formation of the Union Jack.

My sister was one of the spectators and said the flag looked real due to us swaying it looked as if it was blowing in the wind.

I have included a photo of the Queen and Prince Philip, I think my parents took the photo and we have had it from 1954.

It’s an event which was brought home to me with the passing of Prince Philip.

We are thinking of our Queen and her family at this sad time.