Behind the scenes on an emotional day as the new King is proclaimed at Stratford Town Hall
“God Save The King!” is the cry that echoes around Stratford on Sunday after the Proclamation of Accession is read out from the balcony of the town hall at 2pm.
It feels at once weighty and a relief. The Queen is gone, but life goes on, despite the sadness.
Prior to the ceremony, the Herald joins councillors and dignitaries as they prepared for the Proclamation of the Accession.
Despite the gravity of the historic moment and the formality of the dress worn by officials, the chat inside the town hall is animated. People share stories about the Queen, some are still watery-eyed, but there is also a positive note: a sense of looking forward as the new King is declared.
While his wife Kathryn reads the Proclamation at Alcester, Cllr Mark Cargill, chair of Stratford District Council, will read it here in Stratford.
He also senses the optimism. He tells the Herald: “It is a historic moment. I’ve got amazingly mixed emotions. The death of The Queen is like losing a member of the family. She’s the only monarch I’ve had in my 70 years – she was on the throne a few months after I was born.”
He continues: “It is a sad time but on the other hand a happy time as we have the King taking the throne. I am so pleased for him. I think he will be a great king.”
Although he has never met The Queen in person, Cllr Cargill says she has been a constant presence.
One moment that stands out for him was when she visited Aberfan after the disaster there in 1966 which killed 116 children and 28 adults.