Thursday, 2 June 2011

Coronation Day, Dundee, June 2nd, 1953

On Coronation day in 1953 we lived on the Clement Park housing scheme in Lochee and our family were the first and only people in the street who had a television. My Dad (I called him Daddy then) was like that. We also had the first telephone, the first car and the first washing machine. The day dawned cold and grey and it was still like that at about half past ten when it seemed like everyone in our road as well as all our relations poured into our living room to watch the coronation on our brown bakelite nine inch screen Bush television.  Mum (I called her Mummy then) put out cakes and scones. My pal Gerry Laing and I watched the royal carriages rolling down the London streets for about 15 minutes until it got boring. The television screen was tiny and in black and white and the picture was spotty. It wasn't as good as seeing a technicolor picture down at the Rialto. Gerry and I sneaked out of the house and sat on the back steps. The coronation wasn't all that bad. At school we had been given a free mug with a picture of the queen on it but better than that we'd been given a bar of Cadbury's chocolate in a tin box. We'd also got a day off school.
Gerry went around to his house and got an old tennis ball and we decided to play football on the back green. It wasn't great playing football with a tennis ball but it was better than nothing. He was Charlie Tully. I was Billy Steel. It stayed cold and grey for the rest of the day.  
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