THROUGH THE ARCHIVES: Princess Elizabeth celebrates her fourth birthday

From the News Letter, April 21, 1930

The News letter on this day in 1930 reported that just after breakfast time at Windsor Castle a “secret” room was to be opened by the little Princess Elizabeth of York, the future Queen Elizabeth II as part of her birthday celebrations.

Inside she was to find “heaped on a table a number of mysterious brown paper packages”, which were “just some” of the presents that the little princess would receive that day.

The News Letter reported: “There are many parcels in the mystery room. Among them is a special gift from the Prince of Wales. Not even the Duke and Duchess [of York] know what this packet contains, and Princess Elizabeth intends to open it herself first among all her presents.”

Princess Elizabeth greets crowds from the balcony of Enniskillen Town Hall in 1946. Picture: News Letter archives

After spending the morning among her gifts the princess was to then have a birthday dinner in the Royal nursery and later in the afternoon would attend a tea party as which Viscount Lascelles and Master George Lascelles – Princess Mary’s two sons – would be the chief guests.

The young Princess Elizabeth had been busy the day before when she, accompanied by Lord Lascelles and the Honourable Gerald Lascelles, had watched the changing of the guard in the Grand Quadrangle at Windsor Castle.

During the ceremony the band of the Scots Guards had played selections from Rose Marie to which “the Princess beat time”.