Minehead enjoyed a day to remember when it celebrated the Silver Jubilee of King George V and Queen Mary on May 6th 1935. These celebrations were organised by The Entertainments Committee of the Council. Proceedings began at 10.30am when the Radio Van and the Town Crier paraded the streets and announced any changes to the day’s scheduled programme.
At 12 noon a Service of Thanksgiving was held in Blenheim Gardens organised by the clergy of all denominations. The singing was led by the United Choirs. Plans had been made to use the Regal Ballroom if wet. Following the service the Chairman of the Council J. F. Etherden Esq. JP gave a Resolution of Loyalty and Congratulations to their Majesties, which was sent by telegram to Buckingham Palace.
On a green area on the Seafront at 12.45pm the Chairman announced a scheme for the construction of the Jubilee Memorial Gardens. This was to provide a walled sunken garden and new bandstand on the green, financed by public subscription towards the wages of the men who would be working on the scheme. These men would be those currently unemployed.
In the afternoon a procession of schoolchildren, many of them in fancy dress were led by the Town Band from Parkhouse Road via The Parade, The Avenue and Tregonwell Road to the Recreation Ground in Irnham Road where a pageant was presented entirely by the children. They Sang choruses of ‘Land of My Fathers’, ‘The Campbells are Coming and ‘Rule Britannia’ and performed Country dances.
The Jubilee pageant featured among other things Britannia, Representatives of the Empire, Famous Fliers, Heroes of the Empire, Banner and Gifts bearers. They sang songs such as ‘ The Red, White and Blue’ and ‘Land of Hope and Glory.’ The final one being a special Jubilee song ‘Let us Sing unto their Majesties ‘,followed by the National Anthem. Afterwards the children marched to the Regal Ballroom for tea. On leaving the Ballroom each child was given a souvenir tin of chocolate and a Jubilee Vase.
Thanks were given to all who had decorated their premises for the event and especially the Minehead Electric Supply Co. which provided evening lights on the seafront and in the gardens free of charge. The organising committee was also thanked along with the Clergy, the Police, the Fire Brigade,St John’s ambulance, Traders, Scoutmasters and Guide Captains.
On May 8th a house to house collection was undertaken in aid of the Memorial Garden Fund whilst the Chairman of the Council and his clerk representing the civic life of Minehead attended a Service of Thanksgiving at Wells Cathedral
* The Jubilee Bandstand was erected where two previous ones had stood (one of which is shown in the photo ). It was converted in 1948 to the Jubilee Tearooms and the rows of seats where crowds used to sit and listen to open air concerts were gone. The bandstand remains as a cafe and Crazy Golf covers most of ‘The Green Spot’ as the area was once known. It has fared far better than Queen Victoria’s Diamond Jubilee Drinking Fountain which was mislaid after its removal for road widening!
Compiled by Sally Bainbridge on behalf of Minehead Conservation Society.
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