Cecil Auld from the 1st Banbridge was one of 40 boys chosen from Northern Ireland District Boys Brigade to represent the movement at a momentous occasion in history - the Queen’s coronation, in 1953.
In a charming account of his time in London, Cecil wrote: “I feel I have witnessed a spectacle I shall never forget.
“It would require a more able pen than mine to adequately describe the moving scenes - the huge crowds, the flags, bunting and other decorations, the glitter of uniforms of troops from all parts of the Empire, the music of the various military bands and above all the great procession to and from the Abbey led by the golden coach in which the Queen was seated”.
The boys had spent a day of sightseeing in ‘the beautifully decorated city’, and after a good nights rest Cecil recalls how the Reveille was sounded at 3.15am and they had to get up and march to their position at Buckingham Palace Gates for 4.30 in the morning.
He continues: “There were lots of things happening to attract our attention during the long wait.
“The huge crowd around Victoria Memorial was in high spirits and cheered everyone from some important person going into the Palace to a policeman chasing a dog off the route.
“At last the great procession started and as the Queen in her golden coach passed slowly out of the Palace we had an excellent view being only a few yards from the centre of the road.
“Excitement was very high and everyone forgot the rain and the long wait and cheered for all they were worth.
“In the afternoon we had another grand view of the Queen as she returned from the Abbey wearing her crown.”