swindonweb®  home    make this my homepage
myswindonweb   LOGIN / REGISTER  

It's Swindon, Ma'am! 

Visits to Swindon by Queen Elizabeth II, our longest-serving monarch
Although Queen Elizabeth II no doubt passed through Swindon many times while using the Royal train for engagements in the South West, it is only on four occasions that she officially visited the town during her 70 amazing years on the throne - with November being definitely 'one's' favourite month for a Royal visit to Swindon.
We salute you, Your Majesty.
1. Town Centre Parade
As Princess Elizabeth

The first occasion occurred three years before Her Majesty was actually coronated, when she visited the town on the 15th November, 1950 as part of the Borough of Swindon's (Est. 1900) own Jubilee celebrations.
Queen's visit to Swindon 1950
First visit:
to the GWR works as Princess Elizabeth in 1950

Her Royal Highness travelled to Swindon from Paddington in London on the aptly named 'Star'-class locomotive No. 4057, The Princess Elizabeth.
Memorial Garden, 1950
Her first port of call being the then thriving GWR Railway Works to take a tour of the engineering factory and to officially name locomotive No. 7037 'Swindon', the last 'Castle'-class train to be built at the Works.

Her Royal Highness then moved on to be greeted by thousands of flag waving children when she opened Moredon playing fields as part of her second engagement of the day.

Queen's Park was the next stop of the Royal cavalcade, where the Princess unveiled a plaque to commemorate her official opening of the Garden of Remembrance.

Her first trip concluded with lunch at the Town Hall with the Mayor and other Swindon dignitories, together with a number of specially invited guests.
2. Wyvern Theatre Opening
First official visit as Queen

But it was to be another 21 years before Swindon was honoured by the first official visit of Queen Elizabeth II when she inaugurated the town's new Civic Centre, which included the Wyvern Theatre, on the 5th November, 1971.
At the Wyvern:
inaugurated as part of the Civic Centre in 1971

Unfortunately, it was a day marred by bad weather; the Queen thankful for the cover offered by the special platform erected to commemorate the occasion while she made a brief speech before regally announcing the Centre open.
3. Gorse Hill Nursery
Plus almost time for shopping at The Brunel

The next visit is very well remembered by the pupils and staff of Gorse Hill Infant School where the Queen took time on a whistle stop tour to open their new nursery on the 7th November, 1997.

"It was a fantastic day for everyone at the school," remarked the Headmistress at the time, Mrs Prisca DaCunha.

"Her Majesty was so kind and warm and it was an honour that the Borough choose us for the visit."
Queen in Swindon
Opening Gorse Hill Nursery, 1997

A large picture of Her Majesty which our Monarch kindly signed while at the school, still hangs proudly in the main assembly hall to remind the pupils and staff of the memorable day.
Beforehand, Her Majesty took in a tour of the Brunel Shopping Centre where waiting wellwishers handed her flowers and briefly chatted.
The Queen ended visit ended with a Civic lunch at Lydiard House.
Queen in Swindon
Queen in Swindon
Queen at The Brunel Swindon
Queen in Swindon
4. Motorola

The Queen's last visit to Swindon occurred on the 26th October, 1998 when she visited the town to open the new 82 million pound Motorola factory at Groundwell.
Queen at Motorola Swindon 1998
Inspecting Motorola, Swindon, 1998
Queen in Swindon
Queen in Swindon
A Royal event that, at the time, truly encompassed how Swindon had developed from being the railway dominated town of her first in 1950 to being the base for new-world technology firms such as Motorola, Intel and Lucent as a new century beckoned.

Sadly, her 1998 appearance proved to be her last in Swindon, as the town wasn't included as a stop-off in the Queen's Jubilee tour of the UK in 2003 or her Platinum Jubilee of 2022. 

King Charles III

When the people of Swindon can look forward to officially welcoming the new King, Charles III, we aren't sure, but with his former Wiltshire home in Tetbury not far away, we don't think it'll be long.

Most probably with a November date, of course.

SwindonWeb would like to thank Gorse Hill Infant School and Calyx Multimedia for their help in providing pictures for this feature.
Queen Camilla in Swindon
Queen Camilla in Swindon Old Town by royal appointment as monarch visits Deacons Jewellers to mark their 175th anniversary - WATCH VIDEO
More22 January 2024
Prince Philip In Swindon
Prince Philip In Swindon With the sad news of his passing, we look back at his last visit to Swindon to officially open GWH & meet students at New College in 2003 - PHOTOS
More09 April 2021
Diana in Swindon
Diana in Swindon We look back on the Princess's visits to town - both official & unofficial - WATCH VIDEO
More30 August 2017
Ambitious Plans For Town Centre
Ambitious Plans For Town Centre Vision for a landmark museum and art gallery for Swindon revealed...
More13 December 2016
Royalty Recognises The 'Father' of New Swindon
Royalty Recognises The 'Father' of New Swindon Camilla officially names Sir Daniel Gooch Place at Swindon train station...
More20 October 2016
Ear To The Throne!
Ear To The Throne! Prince George enjoys a day out at the Royal International Air Tattoo - SEE PICTURES
More08 July 2016
First Class!
First Class! Deacon's Jewellers creates Limited Edition GWR pocket watch - WATCH VIDEO
Swindon Works 175th Anniversary
Swindon Works 175th Anniversary The Marriott Swindon Hotel explores the history of Swindon's famous railway works...
Swindon Armed Forces Day
Swindon Armed Forces Day Early details announced for this year's celebration of our nation's armed forces...
Armed Forces Day Swindon 2014
Armed Forces Day Swindon 2014 Full FREE day of entertainment in Faringdon Park showing support for the Armed Forces - 28 JUNE
Bravery Recognised
Bravery Recognised Proud evening as Swindon soldiers are awarded Operational Service Medals for Afganistan Tour - WATCH VIDEO
More12 March 2014
Restored For Everlasting Remembrance
Restored For Everlasting Remembrance Hundreds gather at Highworth war memorial for Remembrance Sunday - PICTURES
More10 November 2013
Yummy Ma'am-my!
Yummy Ma'am-my! Fancy a memento of the Royal baby being born? Cute mugs now on sale at Deacon's Jewellers...
More24 July 2013
The Duchess & Doctor Who!
The Duchess & Doctor Who! Royalty opens new charity shop at Uplands School - and takes home Timelord memento - SEE PICTURES
More25 April 2013
Radnor Street Remembrance
Radnor Street Remembrance Swindon honours its war graves at much-neglected cemetry - GALLERY + PICS FROM OTHER REMEMBRANCE DAY CEREMONIES
More11 November 2012
Strictly Poppies
Strictly Poppies Come Dancing stars perform at the opening of Remembrance Field at Lydiard Park - GALLERY
More09 November 2012
Swindon's New Masterplan
Swindon's New Masterplan Forward Swindon announce new regeneration plans for Swindon town centre - SWTV
More05 September 2012
Even The Queen Was Invited
Even The Queen Was Invited A look back at Swindon's last big regeneration project - and what happened when the money ran out...
More07 August 2012
SWINDON VOICES: Green Spaces or Homes?
SWINDON VOICES: Green Spaces or Homes? Do we need more houses or more green spaces? We ask the people of Swindon for their opinion - SWTV VOX POP...
A Right Royal Party!
A Right Royal Party! Our full guide to the Queen's Diamond Jubilee celebrations in Swindon...
SWINDON VOICES: BBC Wiltshire Do we really need local radio? We ask the people of Swindon for their opinion - SWTV VOX POP...
SWINDON VOICES: Queen's Diamond Jubilee
SWINDON VOICES: Queen's Diamond Jubilee It's a time to be celebrating, isn't it? We ask the people of Swindon their opinion - SWTV VOX POP
More04 May 2012
It's Time To Celebrate, Ma'am
It's Time To Celebrate, Ma'am STEAM museum and Deacon's launch special GWR pocket watch to mark the Queen's Jubilee year - WATCH VIDEO...
More11 April 2012
Final Ride of Respect
Final Ride of Respect Thousands of bikes turn out for last Mother's Day parade through Royal Wootton Bassett - GALLERY...
Officially 'Royal' Wootton Bassett
Officially 'Royal' Wootton Bassett Gallery from Bassett's big day...
More16 October 2011
Ready for Royal Approval!
Ready for Royal Approval! New Wootton Bassett signs revealed before the big day on Sunday...
More13 October 2011
Wootton Bassett Rocks!
Wootton Bassett Rocks! Local people unite to make charity single & video for military charities - GET INVOLVED - VIDEO FILMING THIS SUNDAY...
More15 September 2011
Wyvern at 40!
Wyvern at 40! Cheggers cuts the cake to celebrate Swindon theatre anniversary...
More03 September 2011
Gathering For The Final Time
Gathering For The Final Time Sunset ceremony marks the end of repatriations through Wootton Bassett...
More31 August 2011
Everyone A Hero
Everyone A Hero ARCHIVE: Wootton Bassett honours Lieutenant Daniel John Clack - the final repatriation...
More18 August 2011
The Final Repat?
The Final Repat? Emotional farewell in Wootton Bassett for Marine James Wright...
More11 August 2011
A Right Royal Treat
A Right Royal Treat Swindon celebrates Royal Wedding with street parties across the town...
More29 April 2011
Ride of Respect
Ride of Respect 10,000 bikers ride through Wootton Bassett to show appreciation for fallen soldiers...
More04 April 2011
A Mother Mourns
A Mother Mourns Emotional repatriation at Royal Wootton Bassett...
More30 March 2011
Arise Wootton Bassett
Arise Wootton Bassett Queen confers new 'Royal' name on Wiltshire town...
More16 March 2011
End of the 'Tube'
End of the 'Tube' Iconic part of Motorola building dismantled...
More23 November 2010
Royal Tribute
Royal Tribute Prince Harry opens Remembrance Field at Lydiard Park...
More09 November 2010
Mecca Bingo to be turned in to live music venue
Mecca Bingo to be turned in to live music venue New live music venue all set to open...
More16 September 2010
One is impressed!
One is impressed! Princess Royal opens the new central library...
MoreTV22 May 2009
By Roy-ale appointment!
By Roy-ale appointment! Duke of Kent visits Arkell's brewery to launch commemorative ale...
MoreTV05 June 2008
The History of Swindon
The History of Swindon A journey back through Swindon's proud history...
The Railway Works
The Railway Works Celebrating Swindon175. A short introduction to the world's finest railway works. Founded this week in 1841....
Camilla flies into Swindon
Camilla flies into Swindon Duchess of Cornwall opens new Swindon College campus - video and gallery...
MoreTV29 November 2006
Princess Anne in Swindon
Princess Anne in Swindon Princess Royal opens the Swindon Corporate Games...
More02 June 2006
The Burj
Absolute Skips - skip hire in Swindon
Barnes Coaches Advert
Chelworth Windows and Conservatories, Swindon, Wiltshire