The day when 3,000 Hartlepool children saw the Queen

The Queen inspects the Durham Light Infantry.
The Queen inspects the Durham Light Infantry.
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Three thousand children, two mayors and two town clerks from Hartlepool had a day to remember in June 1956.

Sixty years ago, Her Majesty the Queen and the Duke of Edinburgh visited the Tees Valley and a huge representation of Hartlepool people was there to greet them.

The children chatted excitedly to each other. For the vast majority, it was the first time they had seen a member of the Royal family. The Royal car came into Junction Road and the children spilled onto the roadway, straining to get as close to the car as possible

Northern Daily Mail reporter, 1956

Stockton, Norton, Thornaby and Middlesbrough were all on their itinerary but the visit was seen as so important, there was massive interest in town.

One thousand excited schoolgirls left Hartlepool station at 8am that day. More girls boarded the train at Seaton Carew.

They arrived at Norton at 8.55am. Minutes later, a delegation of 1,000 West Hartlepool boys arrived on another train.

And just before 10am, 2,000 children from West Hartlepool marched in fine order to Junction Road to take up their positions by the side of the road, where 1,000 children from Hartlepool were also standing.

Our report on the day said: “Then the long wait began. The children chatted excitedly to each other. For the vast majority, it was the first time they had seen a member of the Royal family.”

The Royal car came into Junction Road and the “children spilled onto the roadway, straining to get as close to the car as possible.”

Later, town dignitaries including West Hartlepool Mayor Mrs T. Breward and town clerk Eric Waggott; and Hartlepool Mayor Coun Thomas Marine and town clerk L.O. Williams, were all presented to Her Majesty.

What are your memories? Email chris.cordner@jpress.co.uk