The Royal Visit to the University of Bristol 1958
Friday December 8th and Queen Elizabeth is greeted outside the University just six years into her long reign [sixty years in 2012]. This scene is outside the Wills Memorial Building at the top of Park Street. Flags and Christmas trees decorated with lights break the gloom. Across the road the pavements are crowded and unlike security today there is no police line. Thin or otherwise. A bright window display dating from the 1930's advertises corset-like slimming belts for men.
Her Majesty travelled from London by Royal train while Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh arrived from Bristol airport - following a private visit to Holland and Germany - the Prince was delayed by fog.
Her Majesty was greeted by the Vice-Chancellor, Sir Philip Morris at the University. The visit was for the opening of the newly built Queen's Building, home to the Engineering Department - there is a plaque there commemorating the day. But her thoughts were for the engineers of the future and The Times, London reported some of her speech.
" I hope that those of you who pursue technical studies will not fail also to benefit from the wider intellectual environment in which you find yourselves here," said her Majesty,"for side by side with technological experts we still need in this country men with extensive interests and well-stocked minds who have the wisdom and judgment to see how best the great advances in the field of scientific discovery can he used for the benefit of mankind."
Leaving with the Vice-Chancellor.. Sir Philip received his first honour from King George Vl , Queen Elizabeth's father. Among his many achievemnets Sir Philip was the United Kingdom's delegate to the first ever UNESCO conference in 1946

Tony Morrison Remembers

"The day was dull and overcast. Park Street leading up to the University still had World War ll bomb scars - some buidings had been demolished and others had wooden props. There was a good crowd and security if at all was simple. As I had a chunky camera and flashgun the single police officer outside the door waved me to a spot next to a couple of local Press photographers - there was nothing like the baying hordes of paparazzi you have now... I think but cannot recall totally, I think they even wore suits and ties."

"I was beginning a post-graduate year studying Education - and it gave me a bit more time to concentrate on photography - so much so that the darkroom where I worked, often all night, became known as 'the Department of Photography'. At one stage of the course we were introduced to the basics of cinematography and could experiment with a clockwork wound Bolex 16mm camera. A roll of film was our limit -just two and a half minutes. But it was the experience and inspiration from two professors followed by enormous support from Sir Philip that set me on course for a lifetime of extraordinary adventures..."

"And though at the time I did not know it one of the students lined up inside and presented to Her Majesty was Roger Tutt [Economics] representing the new Churchill Hall a student's residence. Later he became at the age of 21, the business manager for the 1960-61 Trans-Continental expedition of which I was a founder with Mark Howell." [see University of Bristol expedition 1960- 61 - on the menu


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