Royal invitation of a Bolton woman to the Queen’s coronation

The husband of a Bolton woman who was at the Queen’s coronation has told how his wife received an invitation.

On Sunday, Queen Elizabeth II officially became the second longest-reigning monarch in the world.

She overtook the King of Thailand to become the second longest reigning monarch in the world, after Louis XIV of France.

At 94, Dorothy Whitaker is only two years younger than the Queen and attended her coronation on June 2, 1953.

Excited, she took her seat at the Albert Memorial outside the gates of Buckingham Palace.

Dorothy had been invited as part of a carefully selected seated audience.

She sat down in anticipation as the crowd gathered momentum. Dorothy saw Princess Elizabeth pass by on her way to Westminster Abbey for the coronation ceremony. She was also delighted to see her return to the palace a few hours later as Queen Elizabeth.

Dorothy witnessed history in the making.

Dorothy, originally from Yorkshire, lives at Farnworth Care Home, but she and her husband, Richard, have lived and worked in Lancashire since the early 1960s.

Her husband, Richard, detailed what happened that day and how Dorothy got there.

Speaking to The Bolton News, he said: “At the coronation I didn’t know her. She was teaching French and German at Farnham Girls School in Surrey at the time, that was her first teaching job. teacher.

“When she was in college, she was friends with a family called the Semples. The eldest daughter, Pam, was one of her closest friends.

“Pam’s father was head of the post office in England and then was promoted to head of the post office in London.

“He had coronation seats for his whole family – him, his four children and Dorothy. They were on the Victoria Memorial.

“She was there and saw the Princess and Prince Phillip leaving Buckingham Palace to go to Westminster Abbey.

“She saw her return as queen.”

Richard also explained how he and Dorothy met.

He says: “I was in the army at the time, and I got out around Christmas 1954. I was going to start university in September, but I got an unqualified teaching job in time. partial in the modern secondary of my village.

“I used to go back to my old school to coach cricket and rugby. Dorothy taught at Hemsworth Grammar School there.

“We got married in 1956 when I was a university student. We came to Lancashire in 1962, I had a job in Wigan and Dorothy had a teaching job at Derby School in Bury.”

Richard and Dorothy even taught a world famous cricketer many years ago.

Richard said: “One of his students at Hemsworth Grammar School that I had a bit to do with was Geoffrey Boycott.

“Dorothy got her to pass her GCE French.”

Richard also recalled the time Sir Boycott was asked if he remembered his former teachers.

Richard said: ‘My friend was staying at the same hotel as Geoffrey and ended up sitting with him at breakfast.

“He asked, do you remember Dick and Dorothy Whitaker? He replied that I remember Dorothy Elliot, yes.

“Dick was a good cricketer, but Dorothy was a corker!” »

Dorothy became deputy principal and then principal of Accrington Girls Grammar School, as well as deputy principal of Siddal Moor in Rochdale, retiring in 1990.