Film ID:
NEFA 21226



Visitor Tabs


Two amateur films of Newcastle upon Tyne record the colourful procession of decorated floats, marching bands, youth and military organisations, taking part in a parade for Queen Elizabeth II’s Coronation celebrations in June 1953, and trams, yellow-liveried trolleybuses and other traffic around the streets of central Newcastle soon after World War Two. This film is part of the Newcastle & District Amateur Cinematographers Association (ACA) collection. 

The first sequences capture the Coronation Day parade through the Newcastle streets in June 1953. A succession of decorated floats, marching bands, youth and military organisations parade along Gallowgate, the street lined with crowds of people.

A car drives by first, decorated with red, white and blue swags and a large portrait of Queen Elizabeth II. The following groups and floats then pass by in the parade: nurses in uniform for the "United Newcastle upon Tyne Hospitals float; a large platoon of Territorial Army troops; Stephenson's Locomotion No. 1 engine; model makers; miners leading a pit pony and trap; a Northumbrian pipe and drum regiment in kilt regalia; Boys Brigade floats with banners proclaiming "Towards Christian Manliness" and "20 years of Christian Service"; a float with the slogan "Give Peace In Her Time"; a band of WVRS in dark blue serge uniforms and red sashes(?); a large group of Scouts carrying Union Jack flags; a lorry decorated with a mural of canvas tents with the slogan "Gateway to Adventure" and a small tent set-up; a Cross of St George flag and slogan "Dedication to Service"; Girl Guides carrying Union Jack flags; a group of men and women on vintage cycles (Penny Farthings), tandems and racing bikes; children wearing large papier-mâché animal heads; a vintage Newcastle-Gateshead fire engine; a float celebrating New Zealand mountaineer, Sir Edmund Hillary' and his climbing partner Tenzing Norgay's first ascent of Mount Everest in May 1953; various military regiments and several tanks.

Big crowds also watch the parade as it emerges on Barras Bridge (?), a float for the gas industry driving by. Some spectators perch on a statue, possibly the Armstrong statue in front of the Hancock Museum. Various shots of the parade follow, which include huge crowds on Barras Bridge as fire engines and military regiments pass, The Church of St Thomas the Martyr in the background, and packed smaller streets off Haymarket watching various floats go by. At the end of the parade, people mill around and begin to disperse.

Decorative flower beds celebrating Queen Elizabeth's Coronation adorn a lawn in a Newcastle park, probably off Barras Bridge. People stroll and sit in the park, and a man (possibly one of the Newcastle & District ACA film unit) films the colourful flower beds.

General views of traffic and pedestrians on the streets of Newcastle, many still paved with cobbles, shot sometime after 1945. Trams and yellow trolleybuses share the roads. Trams feature Binns advertising slogans. A Co-op truck travels past carrying a load of full sacks.  The John Sinclair tobacconist can be seen on the corner of Grey Street and Grainger Street.

Various traveling shots record a journey around the Newcastle streets (some in slow motion). Pedestrians occasionally rush across the street in front of the vehicle. Trams with Binns advertising are parked down one street. A trolleybus advertises Andrews Liver Salts. A bright red Co-op van from the "Finishing Department" is on the road. A Carrick's cafe or bakery, and the Grand cinema or theatre (?) are seen as the camera travels forward towards Barras Bridge along Haymarket. Next, there are traveling shots of Neville Street heading for the Central Station, and of the Old Town Hall near the Groat Market. Some sequences repeat.