TATTON MP George Osborne officially opened the Crowning Glory exhibition at Knutsford Heritage Centre on Friday, March 28.
Some 90 people packed the centre’s courtyard garden and exhibition galleries to enjoy the crowns, gowns, memorabilia and memories on display to celebrate 150 years of Knutsford’s May Day.
To officially open the exhibition, 2013 May Queen Jenny Warburton and 2014 May Queen elect Jasmine Dines helped Mr Osborne unveil the display which features the dress worn by May Queen Mary Howarth in 1887 – the year the Prince of Wales attended and gave the May Day its royal title.
“As a parent who has watched my children in the parade over many years, I know how much the Royal May Day means, not just the town but to everyone involved in it,” said Mr Osborne.
“This exhibition captures the spirit of the occasion and its 150th anniversary. I recommend that everyone should go and see it.”
Chairman of the centre’s trustees Chris Henretty welcomed guests and paid tribute to the volunteers for all their hard work in staging the exhibition. Cheshire East clr and chairman of the May Day Committee Steve Wilkinson echoed Chris’ sentiments and said the exhibition represented endless hours of work.
Volunteer Val Bryant said: “We were delighted to welcome David Briggs, the Lord Lieutenant of Cheshire, Cheshire East clrs, Knutsford Town clrs, representatives of Marketing Cheshire, as well as so many local business people, all keen to support the heritage centre and our landmark exhibition.
“All of the centre’s trustees have been very supportive of the exhibition and I’d like to thank them for the work they do throughout the year to keep the centre going and thriving.”
Val also paid special thanks to Knutsford Town Council, Clare & Illingworth, Mannings chemist, Tatton Estate, Sainsbury’s, Knutsford Bloom, Flora Home Furnishings and photographers Fred McDowell, Derek Schofield, Jonathan Farber and Stephen Bridgehouse of Juno Photographic.
She also thanked the Guardian for producing free posters and leaflets and Angela and Bob of Don Giovanni for providing the food and wine on the day.
The Crowning Glory exhibition will run until Sunday June 29. Entry is free, but donations towards the upkeep of the centre are gratefully received. The centre is open Tuesday to Saturday 11am-4pm, Sundays and Bank Holiday Mondays 2pm-5pm, and closed on Monday.