Ipswich has welcomed many royal visitors into the town over the past 151 years of its existence. To celebrate the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee, we’re taking some time to remember the royal guests Ipswich has played host to:
26th of February 1868 – Prince Alfred, Duke of Edinburgh and the son of Queen Victoria arrived at an Ipswich wharf by steamboat on Sunday the 26th of February 1868 to a large crowd of excited Ipswich residents. The Aldermen arrived at the reception, in a coach provided by a local resident, and welcomed the Duke to Ipswich. Prince Alfred was also shown around the local Ipswich Grammar school and addressed by the Headmaster of the time.
1st of August 1920 – The Prince of Wales departed from the Roma Street Station Brisbane to arrive in Ipswich to be received by a downpour of rain. The Mayor and Aldermen of the Council joined Ipswich in celebrating the arrival of the Prince by singing the National Anthem before waving off the royal motor car to Queens Park. The Mayor proceeded to make a royal address to the Prince and lunch was served at the Town Hall. During his time in Ipswich the Prince of Wales also asked to meet all those involved in the war effort including returned soldiers and those involved in the Red Cross and Comforts Fund.
April 1927 – The Duke and Duchess of York (later King George the VI and Queen Elizabeth) spent one hour in Ipswich before proceeding to Brisbane in 1927. The royal train arrived at Ipswich Station promptly at 1:00pm where they were received by the Mayor of Ipswich. The National Anthem was played by the Vice Regal Band as the royal party made their way from Union Street to Queens Park where the Aldermen and their wives were presented by the Mayor to the Duke and Duchess of York. The Mayor and Town Clerk performed a welcome address to the Duke and Duchess and later His Royal Highness met with the widows and mothers of fallen soldiers. The royal procession returned to the Ipswich train station where they boarded and made their way to Brisbane.
19th of February 1958 – Queen Elizabeth the II the Queen Mother arrived in Ipswich on the 19th of February to a crowd of 12,000 people. Residents of Ipswich were asked to prepare and beautify the city by planting as many flowers as possible in their gardens, and owners of businesses were permitted to close at 1:30pm for the procession. Queen Elizabeth was received at Queens Park by Mayor James Finnimore who accompanied her through the paths in the park which were lined with air force and army cadets.
1962 – Her Royal Highness Princess Alice visited the City of Ipswich in 1962.
1992 – Katherine Duchess of Kent completed a royal tour of the City of Ipswich in 1992.
20th March 2011 – Prince William arrived in Ipswich nine weeks after the devastating floods took hold of Ipswich touching the hearts of many residents with his kind words and offering emotional and spiritual support to those affected by the floods. Prince William arrived at West Moreton Anglican College at 11:30am escorted by eight police motorcycles, two police cars, and eight government vehicles. Residents of Ipswich were lining up hours before the 11:30am start, where students formed an honour guard into the hall filled with awaiting residents. Prince William travelled west to Grantham and Toowoomba after his visit to Ipswich.
Information taken from: The Ipswich City Council website (http://www.ipswich.qld.gov.au) and various Queensland Times newspaper articles.