Ryde Social Heritage Group research the social history of the citizens of Ryde, Isle of Wight. Documenting their lives, businesses and burial transcriptions.
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King Alfonso in Ryde 1906

King Alfonso & the Royal Party

By special command of H.R.H. Princess Henry of Battenburg, a special concert was held on Thursday afternoon 25 April 1906, by the Winter Concerts Committee.  The Royal Governor, Princess Ena, and King Alfonso of Spain attended.

There was considerable excitement manifested in the town when it was known that the Royal party were really coming to Ryde, and as soon as the special concert was announced there was an immediate rush to book seats.  Only a small portion of those who applied could be accommodated.  The small Hall was also opened and was well filled with people who were in their places for a considerable time before commencement of the concert, Flags were put up in the hall and strings of flags were hung across Lind Street.

St Thomas’ Square was filled with a waiting crowd shortly after two o’clock to see the arrival of the King and Princess Ena, who were perhaps, just then, the most prominent personalities in Europe. With Princess Henry, Princess Ena and the King were Princes Maurice and Leopold of Battenburg. The royal party were met at the main entrance of the Town Hall by the Mayor (Councillor F. W. Randall), General and Mrs Fetherstonhaugh, Mr M. Maybrick (Chairman of the Winter Concerts Committee), and Mr J. I. Barton, the hon. Secretary. As they entered the hall the Mayoress presented Princess Henry with a bouquet of white flowers and the little daughter of Mrs Randall presented another bouquet to Princess Ena.

The band engaged was that of the Royal Artillery, the conductor being Mr George Miller, L.R.A.M. The concert was not arranged at such short notice without great difficulty, and it was almost entirely due to Mr J. I. Barton that the affair was so successfully carried through.

Note: Full report of the concert can be read on page 5 of the IW Observer 28 April 1906

Source: IW Observer
Images: Postcard images Roy Brinton Collection
Article: Ann Barrett