Image for The Coronation of Queen Elizabeth IINot currently available on BBC iPlayer

Duration: 1 hour, 30 minutes

Documentary about the greatest public ceremony of the twentieth century. As well as recounting the events of Coronation Day, 2nd June 1953, the film focuses on the months of meticulous planning beforehand. What took place behind the scenes is told using diaries, letters, official records and government papers, together with much rare, evocative archive. There are interviews with historians and experts on royal ceremonial as well as participants in the ceremony.

The Coronation was an immense challenge - the views of forceful personalities from die-hard traditionalists to forward-thinking innovators had to be reconciled, the movements of thousands had to be marshalled like clockwork, and the BBC had to mount its most ambitious television outside broadcast to date in the teeth of prime minister Winston Churchill's opposition. At the centre of it all was the 27-year-old Queen, bearing an immense responsibility while remaining apparently calm and unperturbed throughout.

This is a story of precision planning, last minute nerves and an ancient ceremony which brought together church, state, aristocracy and monarchy in a glorious panoply - the like of which will never be seen again.

Last on

Sat 1 Jun 2013 20:00 BBC Parliament

Credits

Executive Producer
Denys Blakeway
Executive Producer
Denys Blakeway
Producer
Jamie Muir
Producer
Jamie Muir
Director
Jamie Muir
Director
Jamie Muir

Broadcasts

BBC © 2014 The BBC is not responsible for the content of external sites. Read more.

This page is best viewed in an up-to-date web browser with style sheets (CSS) enabled. While you will be able to view the content of this page in your current browser, you will not be able to get the full visual experience. Please consider upgrading your browser software or enabling style sheets (CSS) if you are able to do so.

Added. Check out your playlist Dismiss