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Queen's visits to Norwich remembered in pictures

PUBLISHED: 18:30 03 May 2010 | UPDATED: 10:11 02 July 2010

The Queen looking at the crowds during her walkabout up Gaol Hill. Dated: May 31st, 1977.

The Queen looking at the crowds during her walkabout up Gaol Hill. Dated: May 31st, 1977.

Angi Kennedy

The Queen is back in Norfolk tomorrow for the official opening of the new Hostry and Refectory at Norwich Cathedral and to visit the Norfolk and Norwich Association for the Blind.

The Queen's route

The Queen is back in Norfolk tomorrow for the official opening of the new Hostry and Refectory at Norwich Cathedral and to visit the Norfolk and Norwich Association for the Blind. Her visits to the county are always memorable events.

The Queen raises her hand to wave at the waiting crowds and, as our photographer captured the moment, it seemed she was smiling just for us.

This was a glorious sunny day to remember for those in the Norwich crowd in 1961. Schoolchildren lined the way and cameras snapped as she swept by in the gleaming Rolls Royce - how many of those photos are still tucked away in precious family albums today?

Happy faces filled the crowd watching the Queen as she inspected troops in the city centre during a visit to Norwich while she was in the county for the Royal Norfolk Show and to officially open the Frank Inch memorial theatre at the Norfolk and Norwich Hospital in July 1957.

Sandringham Flower Show has long been a favourite on the Royal calendar and a picture from 1974 shows the Queen more than making up for the disappointing weather as she chats with some of the women and children in the crowd.

And just a couple of years later there was even more significance in such memories as Her Majesty visited Norfolk once again during her Silver Jubilee year.

Her walk-about in the city centre was a once in a lifetime moment for so many people, young and old, who enjoyed seeing their monarch in close proximity. And from her relaxed smile in this picture, it seems the Queen enjoyed her walk up Gaol Hill in Norwich too.

The next picture really sums up the delight that such Royal visits bring - suddenly the cameras are forgotten as individuals soak up every second of that close encounter. A posy of flowers is given, a few words exchanged and a member of the crowd is left beaming and with their heart beating faster as the Queen thanks them and moves along to another outstretched hand.

Imagine then the excitement for three-year-old Joanna Spear, grand-daughter of the then Lord Mayor William Spear, also in the next picture, as she presents a spray of flowers to the Queen on her arrival at City Hall in Norwich in April 1975. Perhaps the little girl was just too young to appreciate the magnitude of the moment, but she seems to have accomplished her duties well.

In the Eighties another picture shows a visit by the Queen to RAF Coltishall where children from the school lined her path and waved home-made flags to give their Royal visitor a cheery welcome in May 1983. She met families of the service personnel and watching a flying display during her time at the base.

Don't forget, you can buy copies of these and many other old photographs from the EDP archives. Contact Diane Townsend at our Norwich head office on 01603 772449 or email her at diane.townsend@archant.co.uk or call in to any of our offices.

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