Feature

Memorable visits Queen Elizabeth II made to Manchester during her reign

In good times and bad, Queen Elizabeth II always made time to visit the people of Manchester

The Manc The Manc - 9th September 2022

During her 70-year reign, Queen Elizabeth II always made time for Manchester.

The monarch made a number of memorable visits to the city during her record-breaking reign, which saw her spend seven decades on the throne – the longest of any reigning monarch in British history.

Celebrating Manchester’s historic moments and offering her sympathies in tough times, from walking the infamous Coronation Street cobbles to visiting injured children who had been hospitalised by the Manchester Arena attack, the late Monarch was always on hand to mark some of the city’s key moments with a kind word or a friendly wave.

Acting as a stabilising and reassuring presence for many years, she could be relied upon to join Mancunians for celebrations on important occasions and support and to commiserate with us whenever tragedy has struck.

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Following the Queen’s passing on Thursday 8 September, we take a look back at some of the most memorable visits she paid to Manchester over the years.

Do you have a special memory of the Queen visiting Manchester? If so please get in touch at [email protected], we’d love to hear your stories.

The Manchester Arena Attack

Following the attack at Manchester Arena in 2017, Her Majesty visited young victims in hospital who had been injured at the Ariana Grande concert and spoke with staff treating victims of the explosion.

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On a visit to Royal Manchester children’s hospital, she described the event as “very wicked” and whilst speaking with hospital clinicians, doctors, nurses and porters added that: “the awful thing was that everyone was so young. The age of them”, echoing the thoughts of shocked locals.

The Commonwealth Games

Her Majesty visited the city many times to celebrate positive moments, including the Commonwealth Games in 2002 – something of a momentous occasion for Manchester.

During the opening ceremony at the City of Manchester Stadium, she was handed the Jubilee Baton by none other than David Beckham and Kirsty Howard after its final leg had been completed.

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The opening of Manchester’s Metrolink

The Queen visited the city in the summer of 1992 to open Manchester’s Metrolink and unveiled a plaque on St Peter’s Square, meeting a group of local school children as part of her visit.

A stroll down the Coronation Street cobbles

In her most recent visit to Manchester in 2021, Queen Elizabeth re-visited the famous Coronation Street cobbles and popped into the one and only Rover’s Return pub to mark the soap’s diamond jubilee.

Her Majesty travelled to Manchester for a tour of the studios, having last seen them in 1982, and was astonished to hear that the iconic cobbles were the very same ones she had walked on during her last visit, despite the set having been moved.

Manchester United’s FA Cup win in 1963

Technically this was not a visit made by the Queen to Manchester as the final FA Cup match was held at Wembley Stadium, but this was an important moment nonetheless as the Queen presented the season cup to the club in the summer of 1963.

A huge supporter of many sports including football, a number of events have been called off following her passing out of respect for the late Monarch.

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Marking 50 years of the Heinz Factory

Queen Elizabeth II visited Wigan’s Heinz Factory in 2009 to mark the anniversary of the official opening of the plant 50 years ago.

The Wigan factory is the largest food processing plant in Europe and the largest of Heinz’s factories around the world. As part of the visit a new Heinz packing operation was opened and started by the Queen.

A visit to Harpurhey’s Youth Zone

In 2013, she visited Harpurhey’s Youth Zone for a guided tour of the building’s boxing facilities.

As the Monarch left, she was surprised by hundreds of people who had flocked to meet her outside of the facility on Rochdale road.

Do you have a special memory of Queen Elizabeth II that you would like to share? If so, please get in touch at [email protected]

Feature image – Tiwtter / Flickr