Step forward the Queen of the Trestle - carefully!

The street party celebrating the Queen's coronation in 1953 at Ripley Grove, Baffins, Portsmouth
The street party celebrating the Queen's coronation in 1953 at Ripley Grove, Baffins, Portsmouth

THIS WEEK IN 1976: Big crowds for the big band sound

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You might recall that at the end of August I published this photograph of a young girl perched on a trestle table in the middle of a road.

The event was a street party at Ripley Grove, Baffins, Portsmouth, celebrating the Queen’s coronation in 1953.

The picture was sent to me by Brenda Edwards.

But now I’ve been contacted by the Queen herself, the girl on the wobbly table who was Lesley Howard (née Stillwell).

She has sent me three further photographs and in her covering note says: ‘I was that Queen.

‘The crown and robes were made for me by my father and mother.

‘Brenda and her husband-to-be were both neighbours of my grandmother and I was a bridesmaid at their wedding.’

Meanwhile, your memories of the old St Jude’s School at Marmion Road, Southsea, keep coming.

Ann Cowen (née Freemantle) got in touch and doubtless many of you will remember her family – she has five brothers and a sister and six of them went to St Jude’s.

She recalls: ‘The secretary, I think her name was Mrs Allmet, had a tuck shop in her office.

‘It was very exciting. On the day she opened it we queued with one old penny and could buy one currant bun or four fruit salad sweets. Happy days.’

n And finally, Martin Ripley is hoping readers might be able to help him.

Martin is the business manager for Portsmouth’s oldest-established funeral directors A G Stapleford & Sons.

Martin says: ‘I have been trying for ages to find photographs of our branches or funeral-related matters from over the years but have not had any luck.

‘Ideally I would love to get hold of some from where we started in Crasswell Street, Landport.

‘Gathering our history is so important and is something we can show our clients.’

The firm is based in Powerscourt Road, North End, but also has branches at Portchester, Havant and Emsworth.

If you can help please get in touch or e-mail me any material which you might think relevant and I shall pass it on to Martin.