RamsgateHistory.com

THE SPIRIT OF ENGLAND
RAMSGATE JUBILEE
PAGEANT OF "GREAT LITTLE CITIES"


Ramsgate received its Royal Charter on the 2nd of April 1884. 50 years later in 1934 the town celebrated the Jubilee of Incorporation with a Historical Pageant in Ellington Park. Many of our older residents remember this event, and many took part as it was presented by the town.

From the local paper:


From Our Special Correspondent


On a lawn in Ramsgate, within sound of the sea, 3,000 people are recapturing the spirit of England. This town has been a borough for 50 years, and its historical pageant, the full dress rehearsal of which took place to¬day, is being performed as part of the
Charter Jubilee celebrations next week.
But, with its intimate setting in Elling¬ton Park, it might more truly be the Pageant of "All the Great Little Cities of this Country and the Sturdy Characters That made Them"
The setting is small enough for the dialogue to be audible-a great achievement on the part of the director, Mr. Edward Baring, and the producer, Mr. Nugent Monck, of the Maddermarket Theatre, Norwich.
Immediately, good acting becomes pos¬sible and when Hengist, in the person of Councillor A. B. C. Kempe (but lately re¬proved by the Mayor for appearing in the Council Chamber in the full uniform of a Saxon warrior), waves his sword and cries, "We'll take thy service, Sire, and utterly destroy thine enemies!" it is the eternal Englishman who speaks and not merely a puppet in the midst of a vast field.
There is room, also, for the music to be heard clearly. English history has always marched to it, and many con¬temporary tunes, from the famous "Sum¬mer is icumen in" to the stately pavan "The Earl of Salisbury," and the sprightly mid-Victorian polka, "Ramsgate Sands," are included in the eight episodes.
The pageant will be formally opened next Monday by the Lord Mayor of London, and fifteen Mayors of Kent will accompany him. On the five succeeding days it will be opened by other famous personalities, including the Archbishop of Canterbury on Friday, Field-Marshal Viscount Allenby on Thursday, and by the Marquess of Reading, Lord Warden of the Cinque Ports, on the final day. Saturday.


From the St Georges School Centenary Booklet in 1964:

In July, 1934, the town presented a historical pageant in Ellington Park as part of its Charter Jubilee Celebrations.
St. George's took its full share in this, all the Staff being in the Victorian Episode and many girls remember helping to form the crowds in most episodes and in the Prologue procession. Mrs. Bullock also played an Ancient Briton and had to dash home (fortunately near the Park), remove all her woad and stain and be back in crinoline and poker bonnet for Episode 7.
For months beforehand the Needlework room was a hive of activity, the young performers making their own costumes under the direction of Mrs. Clamp, who was Costume Mistress for the Saxon Episode.
Miss Armstrong was on the Pageant, Lecture and Enter¬tainment Committees and Miss Alexander arranged the Folk¬ dancing display during the week.
The Lord Mayor and Lady Mayoress of London and 17 Kentish Mayors came to the first performance of the pageant, of which the press notice said, "Everyone from the principals to the most remote and youngest members of the massed performers gave of their best and gave it willingly ".