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A look back: Queen Elizabeth II's visits to Launceston over the years

It will come as no surprise that Her late Majesty Queen Elizabeth II visited the historic town of Launceston twice in her lifetime.

As we reflect during this national period of mourning for our late Queen, we look back at Her Majesty's visits to our community over the years, thanks to the knowledge and photographic documentation of the visits from Launceston Then! and Roger Pyke.

Princess Elizabeth with Launceston Mayor Thomas Fulford in 1949. Picture: Launceston Then!

Her Majesty first visited Launceston in 1949 and was greeted by Mayor Thomas Fulford, at which time she was the Princess Elizabeth, with the reign of her father King George VI lasting until 1952.

Her Majesty returned to Launceston in 1956, as Queen of England, which is well documented with some beautiful photographs that can be viewed on the Launceston Then! website.

Queen Elizabeth II is received by Mayor Cecil Robins. Picture: Launceston Then!

On this second visit, she was accompanied by her husband, the Duke of Edinburgh, and both were greeted by the Lord Lieutenant, who presented Mayor Cecil Robins and the Mayoress, along with the town clerk Mr C Parsons at the Guildhall in Launceston. Here, she met Wing Commander Norman Macmillan as she inspected a Guard of Honour by the Cornwall Air Cadet Force.

Other dignitaries that met Her Majesty included the deputy mayor Mr H Toy and Sir Harold Roper, North Cornwall's MP at the time, before Her Majesty spoke to members of the Launceston Borough Council and Launceston Rural District Council, the British Legion, Boy Scouts, Girl Guides and local schoolchildren.

Queen Elizabeth during her visit to Launceston in 1956. Picture: Launceston Then!

Her Majesty and His Royal Highness then signed the Launceston Visitors' Book, before being presented with a bouquet by local child Louise Hore.

It was a historic visit for our town, and the community poured into the streets to catch a glimpse of the young Queen.

It appears Launceston was the last leg of the royal couple's tour, as they moved on from the Guildhall to Launceston Railway Station to board the Royal Train back to London.

Queen Elizabeth meets local children from Launceston. Picture: Launceston Then!

Traditionally, the eldest son of the monarch is made the Duke of Cornwall, historically receiving his 'feudal dues' at Launceston Castle

and, with His Majesty King Charles III passing

this beloved title to Prince William, it is hoped that it won't be long before Launceston receives another royal visit...

If you have a memory of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II's visits to Launceston, or a personal story from her reign, please get in touch with us by emailing


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