Prince honours Lancashire's war heroes

County turns out to welcome Royal visitor on tour of county

By Mike Hill
Friday, 9th July 2021, 3:45 pm
Updated Friday, 9th July 2021, 3:46 pm

One hundred years ago today, the Prince of Wales arrived in the north west for a two day tour of the region to personally thank Lancashire’s First World War veterans.

After starting out in the south of the old county, he arrived on the Royal train in Fleetwood at 11am on July 8 after the 75-minute journey from Liverpool.

From a brightly decorated Fleetwood station his tour took him to Rossall School, Blackpool, St Annes, Lytham, Kirkham and Preston before heading to Leyland and Chorley and finishing in Wigan, where he caught the train back to London.

Prince Edward meets Preston’s First World War veterans on the Flag Market

In Fleetwood he was greeted by a guard of honour from the men of D Company, of 5th Bn, King’s Own Royal Lancaster Regiment and then passed waiting Boy Scouts on the Esplanade.

In Blackpool there was a poignant moment when the Prince – later to become King Edward VIII – was introduced to a war veteran with both of his forearms missing. He quietly touched the mutilated limbs and shared a few words with the man.

At St Annes the Royal motorcade was showered with flowers and the road was covered in roses in anticipation of his arrival.

The most impressive crowd of the day was waiting in Moor Park, Preston, where 16,000 children cheered the royal visitor with youngsters ferried in from across town by car for the event, organised just for youths.

Prince of Wales arriving in Preston and greeting the crowds while a cameraman records proceedings

Each carried a union flag and music was played to entertain the children while they waited for the Prince. It was described as among the most memorable scenes of the Prince’s nationwide tour.

By the time he arrived in the Flag Market a huge crowd had assembled with bystanders climbing telegraph poles while others gather on roof tops of shops along the way.

There he met demobilised officers and men including a group of disabled ex-servicemen, the Prince telling a Post reporter: “The whole tour has been very wonderful, very wonderful indeed.”

Huge crowds greet the Prince of Wales outside Preston Town Hall
Prince Edward meets Preston’s First World War veterans on the Flag Market
Prince Edward greets Preston’s injured First World War veterans on the Flag Market
First World War veterans line up outside Preston Town Hall