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1953: The Coronation of Queen Elizabeth II

On 6th February 1952 it was announced that Mountbatten’s cousin - King George VI (1895(1936-1952) had died in his sleep at Sandringham House, the King’s country home in Norfolk.  The King had been ill for some time and the true nature of his health was hidden from most, including The King himself.  He was just 56yrs old and was succeeded by his eldest daughter - Princess Elizabeth, The Duchess of Edinburgh as Queen Elizabeth II (1926(1952-2022).  The new Queen and her husband Prince Philip, 1st Duke of Edinburgh (1921-2021) had been abroad on an official visit and flew back to the UK upon hearing the news of the death of The King and Mountbatten and Edwina were amongst the officials and courtiers at Heathrow Airport to welcome them back.  After a period of Lying-in-State in Westminster Hall, his funeral took place on 15th February 1952 at St George’s Chapel, Windsor.  Mountbatten attended the funeral and as the late King’s Personal Aide-de-Camp (ADC(P), he walked beside the King’s coffin in the same way his own father had done for Queen Victoria (1819(1837-1901) and King Edward VII (1841(1901-1910).

A short film (no audio) by Pathé showing the arrival of
Queen Elizabeth II & Prince Philip, 1st Duke of Edinburgh
at Heathrow Airport, London.  Mountbatten & Edwina

can be seen talking to officials including his cousin

Prince Henry, 1st Duke of Gloucester


The sad return of a heartbroken Queen Elizabeth II

& Prince Philip, 1st Duke of Edinburgh​

at Heathrow Airport, London following the death

of The King.  Mountbatten (left) & Edwina

(with her back to the camera)
were in the official welcoming party

KGVI funeral.jpg

The funeral procession of King George VI leaving The Palace of Westminster - 

following The Queen's carriage (left to right front row) 

Prince Philip, 1st Duke of Edinburgh; Prince Henry, 1st Duke of Gloucester;

Prince Edward 'David', The Duke of Windsor (formerly King Edward VIII);

Prince Edward, 2nd Duke of Kent (back row) second from right is Mountbatten

On 10th March 1953, Mountbatten was appointed Personal Aide-de-Camp (ADC(P) to his second cousin once removed - Queen Elizabeth II (1926(1952-2022) and both Mountbatten and Edwina were in the procession at the Coronation in Westminster Abbey on 2nd June 1953.  Mountbatten of course relished this opportunity to 'dress up' with as many orders and decorations as possible to add to the colour and pageantry the Coronation offered.  The 'new Elizabethan era' brought optimism and hope to the country, for Mountbatten some would say it only brought him more opportunity for self-interest, further advancement and influence at Court.

A short film by Pathé showing how the world mourned

the death of King George VI

Following the death of King George VI (1895(1936-1952) it meant that Mountbatten’s connection and influence with the reigning Sovereign increased.  Already a cousin of the late King and related to most of the Royal Houses of Europe, his nephew - Prince Philip, 1st Duke of Edinburgh (1921-2021) was now the husband of The Queen.  Prior to his marriage, Mountbatten's nephew had became a naturalised British subject in 1947 and adopted Mountbatten as his own surname.  This was now a chance for Mountbatten to take full advantage of this new dynastic connection and began to openly brag that the ruling House was no longer Windsor but that of Mountbatten. 

Apparently Mountbatten’s views were reported back to the aged Queen Mary (1867-1953), whose husband King George V (1865(1910-1936) had founded the House of Windsor in 1917.  Perhaps his personal ambitious aims of greatness was just pride, but some saw it power crazed - either way, it forced Queen Elizabeth II (1926(1952-2022) to seek advice officially from her Prime Minister - The Rt Hon. (Sir) Winston Churchill (1874-1965), who had returned to office following the General Election in October 1951.  In one of her first official announcements of the new Reign, the new Queen declared on 9th April 1952 her "Will and Pleasure that I and My children shall be styled and known as the House and Family of Windsor, and that my descendants who marry and their descendants, shall bear the name of Windsor".  Mountbatten’s hopes that the reigning Royal House would bear his own family name had been thwarted.  This news also greatly upset Prince Philip and caused a rift in their marriage with him stating - "I am nothing but a bloody amoeba. I am the only man in the country not allowed to give his name to his own children."


ABOVE: The Funeral Procession

of King George VI in St George's Chapel,

Windsor Castle - Mountbatten is

walking in the procession

behind his cousin

Prince Edward 'David', The Duke of Windsor

(formerly King Edward VIII)


 Queen Elizabeth II in her Coronation Robes
wearing the Imperial State Crown



Mountbatten & Edwina -
The Earl & Countess Mountbatten of Burma

 in Coronation Robes for the 1953 Coronation
of Queen Elizabeth II


 Mountbatten and his family
in Coronation Robes - 
(left to right) -
Pamela, Mountbatten, Edwina (seated),

John, 7th Lord Brabourne & Patricia


A short clip from
ITV television documentary
"My Years With
The Queen"
(broadcast in 2021)

made to mark the
95th birthday of

Queen Elizabeth II
where Pamela talks informally to her daughter India
about her relationship
with The Queen,

as a relative,
a friend and also 
a Lady-in-Waiting.

This clip concerns Pamela's personal recollections
on the day of the C
of Queen Elizabeth II
on 2nd June 1953


An official photograph of Queen Elizabeth II, members of the British and European Royal Families
in the Throne Room at Buckingham Palace following the Coronation of Queen Elizabeth II.
Mountbatten, Edwina, John, 7th Lord Brabourne,
Patricia and Pamela are standing front row on the right.


Mountbatten returned to the Mediterranean to serve as Commander-in-Chief, Mediterranean Fleet and from June 1952 as NATO Commander Allied Forces Mediterranean and was promoted to the substantive rank of full Admiral on 27th February 1953. Upon his promotion, Prince Philip, 1st Duke of Edinburgh (1921-2021) sent a congratulatory telegram to his uncle.  Philip, (who had been previously promoted to Admiral of the Fleet in January 1953) jokingly said - "keep it up - you may catch up one day!" 


Mountbatten inspecting a Royal Marines Guard of Honour
at the Coronation Fleet Review of the Fleet
at Spithead, Portsmouth in June 1953


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