|Planning notes for the 1954 Royal Visit, presented to the
by Colonel Ralph Sutton
With the recent interest in the Diamond Jubilee of Queen Elizabeth II it is worth noting that the RHSV Collections contain a number of items relating to Her Majesty, in particular, to the Royal Visit in 1954. Several items were donated to the RHSV by a volunteer, Colonel Ralph Sutton. Colonel Sutton had been in charge of organising the transport arrangements for the proposed 1952 Royal Visit which was cancelled following the death of King George VI. Colonel Sutton’s planning formed the basis for the 1954 visit, although for family reasons he himself was unable take charge of arrangements.
Among the many interesting items which Colonel Sutton donated to the Society was the book of Planning Notes for the Tour. This book outlines in fascinating detail the arrangements for travel by ship, aircraft, train and car, including instructions as to exact routes to be followed, where vehicles were to stop, and how, where and by whom the Royal couple were to be greeted. Details of driving speeds, police escorts, handling of the Press, telephones and radios required, how and where flags were to be displayed, and a wide variety of other arrangements are covered.
Other items included in Colonel Sutton’s donations include personal car pennants and signed photographs of both the Queen and Prince Phillip, as personal expressions of thanks for the Colonel’s part in organising a very successful visit.