Diamond anniversary for Queen's visit

IT was estimated that 75,000 people lined the streets of Launceston on Wednesday, February 24, 1954, to see the royal cavalcade of Queen Elizabeth II and the Duke of Edinburgh on their final day in Tasmania.

The newly-crowned Queen Elizabeth II was the first reigning British monarch to visit Australia and her created great excitement where ever it went.

The Royal couple spent four days in Tasmania as part of their 40-day Australian visit.

Official engagements included a garden party at Government House in Hobart and a night at the historic Connorville property at Cressy.

The Examiner reported that the royal cavalcade through the streets of Launceston was eagerly anticipated.

``In perfect, hot, sunny weather, thousands of people rose early to take part in the unique occasion. 

``All along the Royal progress route, which stretched from Six Ways to York Park and back again, crowds gathered from 6 am onwards to welcome the Queen and the Duke.''

At York Park thousands of school children paraded before the royal couple.

Later in the day the 28-year-old monarch and her party flew to Melbourne.

``The Royal Visit came to sad conclusion when a silver-grey airliner soared into a cloudless sky on its way to Melbourne,'' The Examiner reported. 

``Thousands of people at Launceston airport and in city streets stood and watched the plane fly high into the distance. 

``Hundreds of them had tears in their eyes and a lump rose in many a throat. 

``Despite the sadness at the Royal couple's departure, (it) was a memorable day for citizens of Launceston and one which will certainly enhance the city's loyalty to the Throne.''

Queen Elizabeth has made six subsequent visits to Tasmania, the most recent in 2000.

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