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Flags and bunting and shop windows competed for ‘the best window’ as Grantham celebrated royal coronations





Previous coronations and royal jubilees had been celebrated in Grantham, writes Ruth Crook of Grantham Civic Society.

Most of the streets in the town were decorated with flags and bunting and shop windows competed for ‘the best window’. In 1821 for the Coronation of George IV, windows were decorated with lighted transparencies and artwork by Manuel Immanuel the artist, who now has a blue plaque on the Market Place.

There were coronation committees, tea parties, garden parties, street parties and school picnics. School children received celebratory mugs and pens. For the late Queen’s coronation in 1953, the High Street was bedecked withdecorations, despite the post-war austerity.

Flags and bunting adorn the George Hotel in Grantham for the coronation of Queen Elizabeth II.
Flags and bunting adorn the George Hotel in Grantham for the coronation of Queen Elizabeth II.

Many kings stayed in or passed through the town over the centuries. King John stayed in the town at least twice on 25 August 1209 when he stayed for two nights. His other recorded visit was in February 1213, when he arrived in Grantham on the 22nd, and stayed until the 23rd.

The George Centre in Grantham, formerly the George Hotel.
The George Centre in Grantham, formerly the George Hotel.

King John died in Newark on 18 October 1216 and in his last hours Adam, Abbot of Croxton Abbey, acted as his doctor and confessor. Following the king’s death, his heart and bowels were removed by Abbot Adam and taken to Croxton Abbey, near Grantham and buried in the abbey church.



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