DOWN MEMORY LANE: Photographs form part of collective memory

Well, didn't everyone have a good time!

Sunday, 15th July 2012, 2:14 pm
Updated Thursday, 7th June 2018, 7:36 pm

In my last Down Memory Lane article I wrote about past Jubilee and Coronation events and also made a plea for people to send in photographs of this years Diamond Jubilee celebrations from their own towns and villages in West Sussex.

We offered a prize for the best photograph and we will be choosing the winner very soon.

The competition officially closed on June 30 but we are holding it open for another month so we can collect as many as possible for the archives.

So, hurry, send your favourite photograph to the address at the bottom of this article!


We have had a very good response, so far, and I am including a variety of examples.

These photographs are now part of our collective memory and will be preserved at the Record Office for future generations.

Many villages celebrated with a party – or several parties.

We have photographs taken at three separate events in Oving: The Village Hall party; Hayter Gardens Street Party; and a barbecue in Sampson Drive.

Others decided to plant a tree or have a fancy dress or ‘Bake a Cake’ competition.

In Chichester, there was a parade through the streets as well as lots of parties, which were held indoors and out.

Some were organised by groups but there were many individual streets and even tiny closes and blocks of flats that defied the varied weather and got together to celebrate over the long weekend.


We also asked people to contact us if they wanted to share their memories and pictures relating to past Jubilees and Coronations.

The aim is to build up an archive that illustrates how these events, from King George V’s Silver Jubilee in 1935 to Queen Elizabeth II’s Golden Jubilee in 2002 have been celebrated throughout the County.

Some interesting photographs have come to light, particularly from the Queen’s Coronation celebrations in 1953.

They include a Coronation pageant held at St James’ School, Chichester, and the Hunston village celebrations.

The St James’ photograph shows some of the children and the caretaker, George Brooks, dressed as a Beefeater. Mr Brooks made all the carriages for the parade and each class wore a costume to represent a different Commonwealth country.

Also shown is David Phillips who won first prize in the Hunston fancy dress competition.

West Sussex

If you have anything you would like to share with current and future generations, the Record Office would be delighted to hear from you.

We are happy to scan your original photographs or you can email [email protected].

Get in touch

Have you got a memory or photograph you would like to see featured on the Down Memory Lane page?

You can email [email protected] or write to The Observer, Unicorn House, 8 Eastgate Square, Chichester, PO19 1JN.