Naval cadets lined route for Queen’s coronation

Naval cadets from Portsmouth beside the Victoria Memorial outside Buckingham Palace on coronation day 1953
Naval cadets from Portsmouth beside the Victoria Memorial outside Buckingham Palace on coronation day 1953

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Sixty years ago on June 2, an estimated three million people lined the streets of London to catch a glimpse of the new monarch as she made her way to and from Buckingham Palace in the golden state coach.

The ceremony was watched by millions more around the world as the BBC set up their biggest-ever outside broadcast to provide live coverage of the event on radio and television.

Street parties were held throughout the UK as people crowded round newly-acquired television sets to watch the ceremony.

But one of those lucky enough to have been in a prime position that day was 14-year-old Mary King.

She is the third girl from the left in the front row in the photograph.

Mary was a member of the naval cadets based at the old HMS Victory barracks in Queen Street, Portsmouth, who were invited to watch the processions to and from Westminister Abbey beside the Victoria Memorial outside Buckingham Palace.

Mary, of Clarence Parade, Southsea, then lived at Chesterfield Road, Copnor.

The girl next to her was Molly Ling, of nearby Langstone Road, while the girl on the far end she can only remember as Yvonne, who lived at Vernon Avenue, Fratton.

Do you recognise any other faces in the picture?