Film ID:
YFA 3126



Visitor Tabs


Made by Betty and Cyril Ramsden, this film documents the preparations which took place for the Queen Elizabeth’s Coronation Celebrations in Leeds.  The city has been covered in colourful and ornate decorations for the celebration. 

Title – Salute to a Queen 1953

The film opens in the city centre where two men are carrying banners.  The decorations are then attached to the end of a mast which is erected in the centre of a street.  Cars can be seen passing on either side.  A truck pulls up alongside the mast, and two men shovel sand into the box at the bottom to secure the decoration in place.

Men decorate a building with large flower boxes filled with colourful flowers.  More decorations can be seen throughout the city centre, and the Lewis’ building has been decorated with a large crown and E II R sign.  Workmen also build some of the decorations from scratch, and two men can be seen working with wood.  A picture of Elizabeth hangs on the Schofield’s storefront.

Many townspeople can be seen out and about on this sunny day.  Some of the city gardeners water and tend to the flower displays in various gardens in Leeds. 

At the Ramsden’s house, Cyril joins in the festivities by fixing a Union Jack flag to his car.  He first tries to attach it to the grill, but then decides it will fit better on the antenna.

Title – All schemes were completed by coronation week. 

There is a view of the city centre, fully decorated, and Leeds Town Hall.  A brass band plays in front of the Hall, and there is a close up of the conductor vigorously directing his band.  The City Square can also be seen from atop one of the surrounding buildings as well as at ground level, and the Yorkshire Post building has been heavily decorated as well.

Outside the Civic Hall, a double-decker bus pulls around the drive.  It has been specially decorated for the festivities and reads God Bless our Gracious Queen.  It also includes a portrait of Elizabeth painted on the back of the bus. 

There is a brief shot of the Grand Theatre before footage of a terraced street.  The street and all the houses on it have been decorated for the occasion.  Bunting hangs from between the houses, and the neighbourhood children are out playing in the street, some looking towards the camera. 

Title – Service and Gun Salute on Woodhouse Moor

Three large military guns have been set up in a paved area.  Soldiers process around the guns, and a large crowd has gathered for the service.  A priest conducts the service from the middle of the crowd on this windy day.  The soldiers stand at attention and salute before the gunfire.  After the salute, the guns are attached to the backs of jeeps and driven away.  The film closes with the troops marching off led by a brass band.

Title – The End