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WELCOME HOME

DUKE AND DUCHESS

SCENE AT VICTORIA

POPULAR ENTHUSIASM

(From "The Post's" Representative.)

LONDON, 29th June. There was only one thing that niarred the arrival in London of the Duke ana Duenesa of York, and that was the rain But even through the heavy downpour in the open carriage the aainty Duchess smiled as radiantly as she always _ does, and the tanned Duke by her side was looking happy and smiling, too. Despite dripping clothes, the spirits of the crowd were not damped even after their hours of waiting, for they cheered along the entire route and gave the returned travellers a most enthusiastic welcome home. The processional programme was not too long, tor those who arranged it felt that the desire to see Princess Elizabeth ■would be uppermost in the minds of the long-absent parents. The chief aim, therefore, was to unite parents and child at the earliest possible time. No more whole-hearted reception can have feeea accorded to ; tho Eoyal travellers even on a., tour which, as the Duke observed, had evoked "demonstrations of affectionate loyalty far exceeding finything we imagined." The Benown, punctual to time, reached Spithead at 9.30 a.m., and there tho Duke and Duchess received their mails Jour miles south of St. Catherine's Point, Isle of "Wight, the Renown was met by five bombiiig aeroplanes from the Wessex bombing area and four destroyers. These formed her escort to Portsmouth. The destroyers were the Wrestler, Vanoe, Tilbury, and Toreador. When the Kenown entered harbour tho Wrestler and the Vanoc preceded her, while the Tilbury and the Toreador followed astern. All warships at Portsmonth were dressed overall at 8 am Guards were paraded by the Submarine Depot and the Vernon Torpedo Establishment, and a Eoyal Guard of Honour, with the massed bands of H.M.S. .Viotory, Excellent, and St. Vincent, %as posted on the south railway jetty fa the dockyard, beside which tho Renown arrived at noon. A. blare from the ship's bugles and IBenown was "dressed," from bow to etera, with the colours of the rainbow. The gangway was made fast, and the Prince of Wales, followed by Prince Henry and Prince George, both in naval uniform, passed np to greet his brother, who stood alone on tho quarter-deck. One handshake was all there was timo for, before the Boyal salute crashed out from the band of the Koyal Marines on the ship. Then the Duko greeted his younger brothers, thereafter accompanying the Prince of Wales in the inspection of the guard of honour. PBINCE AND DUCHESS. Upon the Eoyal deck the Prince of Wales_ met the Duchess and welcomed her with a kiss, to the obvious delight of the crowd. Prince Henry and Prince George greeted her with a handshake. Thereafter the party entered the Boyal quarters, where they remained for more than half-an-hour. In the course of a reply to many presentations and au address of welcome from the Mayor and Corporation of Portsmouth, the Duke said:— "We share with you the hope that the mission which we have just completed will serve to draw still closer the bonds which unite this country with the other portions of the Empire. At every place we have visited we have been deeply moved by the demonstrations of affectionate loyalty to the Throne, with wVich wo have been greeted. They far exceeded anything we had imagined, and, throughout the tour in Australia ami New Zealand, wo havo been conscious of ono feeling—wo were among our own kith and kin. Those are perhaps the chief of the many impressions we havo. brought back with us, and I am convinced that the moro personal the touch we at home can establish with those who live overseas, the greater the' service we are rendering to the Empire. That is the best way to secure on a sound basis those trade relations on which, aa you havo truly" observed, out prosperity depends." , "With the inspection of the guard of honour on the jetty the. ceremony of reception ended, and, punctually at 1.10 p.m. the Duke and Duchess were en route for London, standing at the door of their Pullman car for a last glimpse of the ship that for so many weeks had been their home, and to wave a cheery parting to the tars who still manned he:: decks. AT VICTORIA STATION. A section of the main line platform at Victoria was carpeted, decorated with lovely flowers, and railed off for the privileged.few. There were decorations_ of hydrangea in blue and white, peonies in pale pink, and rose pink, and delphiniums in deep blue sheltering under the graceful branches of silver maple; in the Eoyal waiting-room a log fire blazed because the Juno afternoon was chilly as well as wet, and outside the station hundreds of flags were arranged beneath the shelter, and a guai-d of honour was formed by scarlet-coated Third Grenadier Guards. Prom a vantage point on tho station platform one had an excellent view of the notable people who were thero in an official capacity. One of tho earliest to arrive was Mr. Baldwin, -who was with the Secretary of State for Scotland. They were quickly followed by Marshal of tho Air Sir Hugh Trenchara, Brigadier-General Sir William Hotwood, the Earl and Countess of Strathraore, Mr. I/. S. Amory (Secretary of State for Dominion Affairs), Admiral of the Fleet Earl Beatty, General Sir George Milne (Chief of the Imperial General Staff), the High Commissioners of Australia and New Zealand, and Sir William. Joynson-Hicks (the Homo Secretary). Sir James Parr, over from Geneva to represent his country on this interesting occasion, was an early arrival. His, presence was noted by Mr. Amery, who went across to greet him, and an engrossing conversation between the two ensued until a member of the staff went up to them and indicated where they were to stand to await the anticipated ceremony. Sir James and Earl Beatty stood' next ono another. The arrival of the King and Queen was made known by tho playing of ] the National Anthem, and the sounds ! of the Boyal Salute, but they did not J appear on the platform until the train was drawing in to the platform. Tho j Queen looked a splendid figure in grey, with a coat of silver tissue embroidered with a largo design of pink and I blue, the neck scarf and other details j being bordered with deep silk fringes of pink and blue; her toque was of swathed silver lame. Behind tho King and Queen one recognised Princess Mary, Viscountess Laseelles, with Viscount Laseelles, the Duke of Coimaught, Prince and Princess Arthur of Connaught, Princess Louise, Duchess of Argyll) the Princess Boyal, Lady Patricia Eamsay, Captain Lord Cavnegio and Lady Maud Carnegie, and Prince Olaf of Norway, also in naval uniform. Lady Strathmore, simply dressod in black, was with her husband, and both seemed to bo counting the minutes. paSiily greetings. As the train drew alongside, one could see that there was a lovely bouquet on each table of the Pullman ears. The King and Queen went forward to the point where the third saloon was to •stop, tho remaining members of tne company standing apart. Looking

around, the Queen saw that Lady Strathmore had taken a place in the background., Her Majesty immediately beckoned the Countess and the Eari to step to the front. When the Duko ana Duchess alighted from the train they found four of the happiest parents tho first to greet them to London. It was naturally a triumphal homo-com-ing. First to descend from the Pullman saloon was the Duke, a tall figure in full naval uniform, his face a little serious, and yet exceedingly happy. He seems much thinner than he was. With a low bow he shook hands with his father and then turned to his mother, to whom he bowed also and then kissed in a most affectionate way. Out of the train, meanwhile, there had stepped the Duchess, dressed in blue, with a coat of blue and brown brocade. She, too, seems slimmer than before. With the most radiant of smiles she greeted Her Majesty. The Queen kissed her on both cheeks, and then the Duchess kissed the Queen's hand, curtseying at the same time. It was all very regal and very human. Prom the Queen the Duchess turned to the King, and the salutation was exceedingly happy. The King, having shaken hands with her and kissed her, touched her twice with the gentlest and kindliest of congratulatory "pats." There followed a few moments' animated talk, for there were many other relatives to greet, none more important, of course, than the Duchess's parents. Lady Strathmore took her daughter into her arms and there was a fond and affectionate embrace. Then the Duchess greeted Princess Mary' and other members of tho Eoyal Family, the Duke being similarly employed. Then the King and Queen led the way to greet tho members of the Cabinet, the High Commissioners, and the other officials. With each tho King and Queen shook, hands, making a suitable remark. Tho King asked Sir James if ho had not just returned from Geneva, and tho Queen also spoke to him. about his having specially returned. As tho King and Queen passed along the line they were followed by the Duchess and the Duke. The Duchess is always with the Queen. With everyone she shook hands and endowed a charming smile upon each in succession. Her face, as she passed along the line, was radiant. To Sir James Parr she said she had had a lovely time in New Zealand, and then made a graceful comment about the children of the Dominion, A MOTHERLY ACT. Then, while standing in a group, the Queen took the Duchess's fur collar ana fastened it, apparently remarking that the day was chilly, and care was needed after passing through warm climes. Having performed this motherly attention with serious expression tho Queen gave a cheery laugh. Now time was up. The King and Queen led the way, and soon the Duko and Duchess, with Earl Cavan, entered their carriage. In a second carriage were other members of their staff. With an escort of Life Guards the two four-horse carriages started from beneath a canopy of flags and disappeared into the open, while the band played tho National Anthem. One could hear the joyous cheers of tho crowds_ as the little procession passed away into the open, greeted enthusiastically by the double lines of people ten-deep. The King and Queen did not leave j Victoria for some time after, forming another procession of their own, also in open carriage. Their Majesties again had a splendid reception from the crowds. They were accompanied by Prince Olaf of Norway and Prince George. Noxt came the Prince of Wales and Prince Henry. Princess Mary and Viscount Laseelles drove away in a clossed motor-car, as also did the Duko of Connaught, Prince Arthur, anil Lady Patricia Bamsay. The King and Queon drove direct to Buckingham Palace, but the Duke and Duchess mado a considerable detour. Inside tho Palace the scene was a happy and touching one. Tho King and Queen, the Earl and Countess of Strathmore, and tho Household staff i were in the Grand Hall, but the first thought of tho Duke and Duchess was j for their little daughter, Princess Elizabeth. ' MEETING- THE BABY. Seeing the baby in the nurse's arms, ] the Duchess ran forward, exclaiming, "Oh, you little darling," ana kissed! and hugged her again and again. It was then the Duke's turn, and eagerly he took the baby and affectionately kissed her. Later the Duchess went on to the balcony of the Palace holding her baby in her arms. Her appearance, accompanied by the King ana Queen and the Duke, was the signal for a great outburst of cheering from the large crowd outside the gates. Tho Queen held up au umbrella to protect the Princess's bare head from the rain. The Duke and Duchess drove away in a closed par, taking Princess Elizabeth with them. At their new home in Piccadilly there was a repetition of the scenes at Buckingham Palace, and the Duchess appeared on the balcony with the little Princess and the Duke. In the evening the Duke and Duchess dined with tho King and Queon and other members of tho Eoyal Family at Buckingham Palace.

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Permanent link to this item

https://paperspast.natlib.govt.nz/newspapers/EP19270804.2.53

Bibliographic details

WELCOME HOME, Evening Post, Volume CIV, Issue 30, 4 August 1927

Word Count
2,061

WELCOME HOME Evening Post, Volume CIV, Issue 30, 4 August 1927

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