Saturday, June 17, 2017

Queen Elizabeth's Official Birthday, Trooping The Colour

Today, Saturday June 17th, is the day Queen Elizabeth II gets to celebrate her second birthday this year....


Queen Elizabeth was actually born on April 21, 1926, but the April 21st date tends to be more private and family oriented. But when you are Queen, everyone wants to celebrate with you! So as the weather is more amenable in June, the 3rd Saturday is set aside as her official or public birthday...and she was 91 in April!



In the earlier years of her reign, she attended the Trooping Of The Colour annual birthday celebration by the Brigade Of Guards on horseback, until a would be assassin shot at her as she rode down the Mall in 1983. The photo above is the Queen on the horse Burmese, whom she was riding that day.  A life long skilled horsewoman, she weathered it well, but after that she has ridden with other family members in coaches to the military tribute.  
The Queen and Burmese were on the special 1977 Silver Jubilee coin struck to honour Her Majesty for 25 years on the throne...

https://timewasantiques.net/products/commemorative-coin-queen-elizabeth-ii-jubilee-1977-mint-in-sleeve

Below is an almost yearly occurrence...one of the Guardsmen goes down...especially if it is a warm day.
My husband participated in several Trooping The Colours for Her Majesty as he was a Coldstream Guard, one of the Queens Own Brigade of 5 regiments.
He said he never fainted, but one year the Guardsman next to him went down.
Adding insult to injury, they were ragged, and charged with being Idle On Parade and had the UK equivalent of KP....


These photos are all from previous years...looking forward to seeing the 2017 versions...









Look for bands, carriages and family members...Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge and Camilla, Duchess of Cornwall always ride in carriages, because their husbands are usually part of the procession on horseback...



This is from 2013 with Prince Charles, Prince William and the Duke of Gloucester...Princess Anne is just out of sight...



 The Queen rode in a carriage last year, and I assume she will again this year...



 Pretty spectacular! And then, there will the group on the balcony...always love that....


Fun to see what George and Charlotte will get up to this year...




 William helped his Grandmother, the Queen, console victims and first responders of the Grenville fire in London yesterday June,16th...he and the younger family members are taking up many duties now that Prince Philip has retired from the many engagements he accompanied the Queen to.


 And June 21 is William's birthday...having been born on June 21, 1982..so happy birthday to William, Duke of Cambridge as well. 


 Happy Official Birthday Ma'am!
Images from today's birthday, 2017

 

Tuesday, June 13, 2017

Queen Elizabeth II Takes 175th Anniversary Historic Royal Train Journey

If you watched the first season of Victoria on PBS, you saw the first Royal train journey in 1840...here is a photo from the PBS Victoria first season of Prince Albert on the train from Pinterest...couldn't find one of Victoria who rode the train later in the day...


But on June 13, 1842, Queen Victoria and Prince Albert made the first Royal train journey on the Great Western Railway in a specially built carriage...this is a drawing from a newspaper before the event...



The journey took 25 minutes from Slough to London Paddington and was considered very shocking or forward thinking of the queen, depending on your temperament...
Of her experience, Queen Victoria wrote in her journal "it was delightful and so quick".
 "It took us exactly 30 minutes going to Paddington, & the motion was very slight, & much easier than a carriage, also no dust or great heat."


Today, Queen Elizabeth recreated that journey for the 175th anniversary...and engine 800003 was renamed the Queen Elizabeth II was renamed in her honour....the journey from Slough to London Paddington took 19 minutes today...an improvement! 


On the train, the Queen sat next to Isambard Thomas, great great grandson of Isambard Kingdom Brunel, the man who had built the train Queen Victoria travelled in in 1842.


https://timewasantiques.net/products/thimble-brunel-anniversary-1706-2006-bone-china-england-famous-engineer-sewing

https://timewasantiques.net/products/thimble-brunel-anniversary-1706-2006-bone-china-england-famous-engineer-sewing 

This thimble was made in 2006 for the 300th anniversary of his birth... at Time Was Antiques... 
Below is an artist's impression of the first journey...


The Queen used the railroad often, but stipulated that the train would go no faster during the day than 40mph and 30mph at night, and must stop for meals... Below is a newspaper illustration of her journey with King Louis-Philippe of France...


The following photos are from Getty Images and show the Royal carriage in 1901 just after Queen Victoria's death, and an historical recreation of the carriage...



And a photo of the Royal private sitting room from 1901...


We have used the trains often in England, from one end of the country to the other and all points in between, and have enjoyed them and found them pretty convenient and dependable...and quite fun!

Friday, June 2, 2017

June 2nd, 1953 A Queen is Crowned For England

June 2nd is the anniversary of the day Queen Elizabeth 2 was crowned Queen of England in 1953...

 The queen followed her father King George VI to the throne...and George never expected to be king...actually was not pleased about it...



but became king by default when his older brother Edward VIII abdicated the throne to marry American twice divorced Wallis Simpson...


King George VI died at the Sandringham estate on February 6th, 1952 while Princess Elizabeth was undertaking a royal visit for her father with her husband Prince Philip....who had to inform her that she was now queen.



And the Queen, now the longest lived and longest reigning British monarch has just celebrated her Sapphire Jubilee of the ascension, and now the coronation...
and long may she reign!

Friday, May 26, 2017

Memorial Day, Bletchley Park, World War 1 Teacup Trio, WW2 Tea Cozy

Hi and welcome to Time Was Antiques for Memorial Day in the US...I decided to join Tuesday Cuppa Tea because I have a patriotic World War 1 Royal Albert Crown China, England teacup trio...

https://timewasantiques.net/products/world-war-1-european-war-teacup-trio-no-price-can-be-too-high-royal-albert

https://timewasantiques.net/products/world-war-1-european-war-teacup-trio-no-price-can-be-too-high-royal-albert


The teacup trio was made at the end of the European War...what we call World War 1, and was supposed to be the war to end all wars. Downton Abbey did a wonderful job chronicling the patriotism and optimism at the start of the war, and the shock at the real conditions the soldiers found. The motto on the teacup trio is:

"No Price Can Be Too High
When Honour  And Freedom
Are At Stake"

https://timewasantiques.net/products/world-war-1-european-war-teacup-trio-no-price-can-be-too-high-royal-albert

The design has the British shield and the flags of the allies, including Japan who became one of the main adversaries of WWII. The flags of Belgium, France, Russia and Japan are represented. The color accents are hand applied enamel paint.



 Moving on to World War 2, I was reminded of the incredibly important work done at a seccret location in England, that has recently been totally declassified and is now open for tours...Bletchley Park....


On July 15, 2011, Queen Elizabeth II and Prince Philip were at Bletchley Park, Milton Keynes, Buckinghamshire to unveil a memorial to the World War II codebreakers who worked here clandestinely and were credited with ending the war 2 years earlier and with the stopping the loss of many more lives. 

https://www.bletchleypark.org.uk/

Bletchley Park is now run by the National Trust and is available for tours and visits...their website is: 
https://www.bletchleypark.org.uk/


http://www.bbc.co.uk/history/topics/enigma

 photo from BBC.co.uk

The Enigma Machine...

http://www.bletchleypark.org/
courtesy http://www.bletchleypark.org/

The Bletchley Park secret decoding work resulted in cracking the supposedly unbreakable German codes. The capture of an German Enigma machine resulted in the code being then worked on another Enigma and Colossus system which was the innovative precursor to today's super computer.

Here is a link to information on the various machines at the Bletchley Park website:

I grew up with stories about the secret work done during the war as my father was part of the secret OSS or Office Of Strategic Services stationed in England with members of MI5 and MI6.  
My father was the head of a traffic intercept station in the Berkshire village of  Hurley-on-Thames, basically eavesdropping on enemy traffic, transcribing or recording it it, and sending on to Whitehall or Bletchley Park for decoding. He was in charge of the detail and lived at the Manor House in Hurley. 
I have a photo I took of the manor in 1990, but it was not with a digital camera, so can't post it.  I did find a photo of his local while there, The Olde Bell, which is one of the oldest pubs in England. We visited the town and took photos in 1992 for my dad and were able to show them to him just a week before he died unexpectedly.


My father was unable to tell my mother where he was...it was just listed as...a village in England...but managed to let her know by referring conversationally to a book he had just read by Leslie Charteris in The Saint series that was popular in the 1940s. He referred to an incident in a book on a page that was set at The Olde Bell in Hurley so she figured out that was where he was.

Winston Churchill credited the work done at Bletchley Park with winning the war.

Account of the Queen's speech, related info of her visit can be found at:
http://www.bletchleypark.org/news/docview.rhtm/646969

https://timewasantiques.net/products/royal-air-force-raf-wwii-silk-tea-cozy-england-vintage-1940s-unfinished
 I have what I call a treasure in the shop...a hand made but unfinished World War 2 silk tea cozy...with an RAF insignia...I have often wondered if it was made from a downed parachute...but have no way of knowing for sure...

https://timewasantiques.net/products/royal-air-force-raf-wwii-silk-tea-cozy-england-vintage-1940s-unfinished
The tea cozy was never padded. Wonderful!

We remember....

Thanks for visiting. I will be joining

Wednesday, May 24, 2017

Happy Birthday Queen Victoria!

Today, May 24th is Queen Victoria's birthday. She was born in 1819 to HRH the Duke and Duchess of Kent...she is 2 in this drawing....


Victoria was born at Kensington Palace, where William and Catherine, Duke and Duchess of Cambridge are now living with their family, and a favorite place of ours to visit and have afternoon tea at the Orangery... this is my favorite view approaching the front gates...

 At the time of her birth, Victoria was 5th in line for the throne. She was christened Alexandrina Victoria, and chose to be called Victoria after she became queen, after the deaths of her intervening relatives in the accession in 1837 at the age 0f 18. She led a restricted and isolated life until her accsession, but apparently was able to withstand pressures to be very much a woman of her own...

 

This portrait is by Sir George Hayter, and was done in 1840 shortly after she became queen and ushered in the Victorian era...ultimately becoming Britain's oldest reigning monarch, surpassing her ancestor Queen Elizabeth I. That record stood until Queen Elizabeth 2 surpassed it in December of 2007, and then became the longest reigning British monarch in September 9, 2015. Long may she still reign!


https://www.royalcollection.org.uk/collection/themes/trails/the-patronage-and-collecting-of-queen-victoria-and-prince-albert/the-royal?utm_source=facebook&utm_medium=social&utm_content=240517&utm_campaign=qvbday

 Victoria married Prince Albert of Saxe Coburg Gothe (there are various spellings), a 3rd cousin, in February of 1840. They had 9 surviving children and were a devoted couple until his untimely death with typhoid in 1861, plunging the queen into a deep mourning she never really recovered from.  Above is a rare early photo of the couple with all their children at Osborne House, Isle of Wight from the Royal Collection.

https://timewasantiques.net/products/queen-victoria-death-of-albert-1861-memorial-pair-of-brass-dishes-mourning


 This is a pair of 1861 brass mourning dishes from 1861 commemorating their dates together.


Victoria died in 1901, having had her 50 year Golden Jubilee in 1887...

https://timewasantiques.net/products/medal-queen-victoria-golden-jubilee-1887-maltese-cross-commemorative

And her Diamond Jubilee of 60 years on the throne in 1897...this is from my personal collection...given me by my grandmother who attended the jubilee festivities herself in 1897 in her native Leicester....


 So wishing Queen Victoria a Happy Birthday...a momentous reign of great progress...I wouldn't like to live among the sanitary conditions at that time, but there were some aspects of beauty, ornamentation, civility and family values that resonate with me still...
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