Here we remember HM Queen Elizabeth II (21st April 1926 – 8th September 2022). Queen Elizabeth II’s historic 70 year reign marks the end of Great Britain’s longest ever reigning monarch and a truly remarkable life of service.
We take this opportunity to remember Queen Elizabeth II’s five state visits to Barbados:
- 1st February 1966 the Queen and Prince Philip arrived by air on a BOAC VC10 via a refuelling stop at Gander, Newfoundland, Canada. They were welcomed at Seawell Airport by Premier of Barbados, the Honourable Errol W. Barrow. From Seawell the Queen and Prince Philip went to Bridgetown where they transferred to HMY Britannia. The 1966 Royal Tour of the Caribbean started a few days later in: British Guiana on 4th February 1966. The Queen and Prince Philip then visited: Trinidad, Tobago, Grenada, St. Vincent, Barbados, St. Lucia, Dominica, Montserrat, Antigua, St. Kitts, Nevis, British Virgin Islands (Tortola, Beef Island, Virgin Gorda), Turks and Caicos Islands (Grand Turk, South Caicos), The Bahamas (Nassau) and finished in: Jamaica on 6th March 1966.
14th – 15th February 1966 the Queen and the Prince Philip, toured Barbados, opening Farley Hill National Park in Saint Peter and the East Coast Road amongst other events.
- 18th – 20th February 1975. During her 1975 visit, the Queen knighted Barbadian cricketer Garfield Sobers in an open-air investiture before a crowd of 50,000 in Bridgetown.
- 31st October – 2nd November 1977. The Queen returned for her Silver Jubilee in 1977, after addressing the new session of parliament, she departed on the Concorde, which was the Queen’s first supersonic flight.
- 28th – 29th October 1985. In October 1985 the Queen and the Duke of Edinburgh visited Barbados as part of a tour of the Caribbean.
- 8th – 11th March 1989. The Queen returned to Barbados in 1989, to mark the 350th anniversary of the establishment of the Barbados parliament.
Some magnificent and historic photographs of Queen Elizabeth II’s visits to Barbados in 1975 and 1977 can be seen seen on Craig Burleigh’s website: Barbados Island Life.
Below is a feed from Barbados Island Life showcasing Queen Elizabeth II’s visits to Barbados in 1975 and 1977 where Craig Burleigh was one of the official press photographers. Scroll down within the feed to see Craig’s photographs of Queen Elizabeth II:
Craig Burleigh is an American born, Bajan bred, San Francisco Bay Area based professional photographer. He grew up on Rockley Beach and at Lamming’s St. Joseph and later on at Edgecliff, St. John. Craig was honoured to photograph Queen Elizabeth II during her visits to Barbados in 1975 and during her Silver Jubilee tour in 1977 when she returned to England on her first flight on Concorde. He has been scanning his back-catalogue of Barbados photographs from the 1970s and is sharing them on his website: Barbados Island Life.
Below is the British Pathe News travelogue of Queen Elizabeth II and Prince Phillip’s Royal Tour of the Caribbean in February 1966. This rich and detailed Technicolor travelogue was the only film authorised by Buckingham Palace. The destinations on this five week long tour included: British Guiana; Trinidad and Tobago; Grenada; St. Vincent; Barbados; St. Lucia; Dominica; Montserrat; Antigua; St. Kitts-Nevis-Anguilla; Tortola (Virgin Islands); the Bahamas; Jamaica. 1966 Crown ©
Below is a recently converted home movie reel from Shaun English that was made by his grandfather Dennis Clifton. “Reel 12 – Royal visits to Barbados” has historical footage of Royal visits to Barbados from 1964 to 1970. Dennis Clifton was a Lieutenant in the British Navy where he met his Bajan wife – Cynthia Goddard before moving to Barbados with her after retiring from service.
Heather Percy (Emtage) shared a home movie made by her father Charles Emtage of Concorde G-BOAE in 1977. This home movie was only discovered a week or so before Queen Elizabeth II died and has not yet been digitally converted, so it is a film of a film recorded on an iPhone from the family’s old movie projector. You may want to mute your sound when watching this video.
Charles Emtage was the owner of Emtage Electric and NASSCO. He was a friend of Errol Barrow, a member of the Barbados Flying Club and the Barbados Defence Force. This home movie was filmed from the tarmac of Grantley Adams International Airport. It shows Concorde G-BOAE landing at the Grantley Adams International Airport on 31st October 1977 and departing as the Royal Flight on 2nd November 1977 with Queen Elizabeth II on board at the end of her Silver Jubilee Tour to the Caribbean.
Additional photographs of arrival of Concorde G-BOAE on 31st October 1977 and departure as the Royal Flight on 2nd November 1977 can be seen above and on photographer Craig Burleigh’s website Barbados Island Life.
Rest in peace:
HM Queen Elizabeth II (21st April 1926 – 8th September 2022)
and HRH Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh (10th June 1921 – 9th April 2021).
Queen Elizabeth II and Prince Philip are buried in the 200-year-old Royal Vault underneath the King George VI Memorial Chapel which sits within the walls of St. George’s Chapel at Windsor Castle. The Royal Vault houses some 25 coffins, that include: King George III, King George VI (the Queen’s father), Princess Margaret, The Queen Mother, Prince Philip and Queen Elizabeth II.