• June 18, 2015


In May 1996 in the early days of online Celtic News we reported on the debacle surrounding a visit to Wales by the Queen which had to be cancelled as follows;


The decision of the Queen of England to cancel her visit to Wales on May 31st is both a further humiliation to the Crown and also to the British Intelligence Services charged with the Queen’s protection.

The Queen was in Wales to open an £11 million extension to the National Library of Wales and was scheduled to follow this with a schedule which included a visit to the University of Aberystwyth to meet staff and students at the Institute of Earth Studies.

The routine visit started to fall apart at an early stage when, as the Royal party’s motorcade approached the National Library, demonstrators vaulted barriers and tried to storm the vehicle which was forced to take evasive action. Five demonstrators were detained.

Later, as several hundred students gathered at the University Campus, a decision was taken to end the visit.

The dramatic decision to cancel engagements, taken on security grounds, indicates that both the Queen’s advisors and also the intelligence services, who normally carry out preparatory work ahead of such visits, were caught totally unprepared.”

Last week the Queen did pay a brief visit to Wales and this time the visit to present colours to the Royal Welsh Regiment did go ahead.

According to the some of the Welsh media thousands of onlookers turned out to cheer the Queen and one paper covered the visit in almost minute by minute detail online.

However, when we decided to do some research it turned out that the media were telling ‘porkies’: the thousands turned out to be ‘tens’ plus a few bemused shoppers, and the stadium where the Queen inspected the Regiment from – the back of a Range Rover (well she is quite an age now) – was virtually deserted.

We have ‘harvested’ some photos of the event (sorry we cannot carry them on CL news but will try to post them on Celtic League Mannin Facebook).

You can count the ‘thousands’ yourself in the two photos we are publishing: there’s about 29 on one pic (and some of them look as if they are waiting to cross the road and at least three on the far side we think are police) meanwhile on the other there’s a crowd of…err…5, and two bemused shoppers.

As the Queen was due to arrive at Cardiff Central station one obviously disappointed ‘news hack’ reported no big crowds but just a heavy police presence and a few passengers waiting for trains!

Nothing much has changed for ‘Elizabrit’ in Wales in twenty years, still not that welcome and people don’t even turn out these days to protest!

J B Moffatt (Mr)
Director of Information
Celtic League


(Please note that replies to correspondence received by the League and posted on CL News are usually scanned hard copies. Obviously every effort is made to ensure the scanning process is accurate but sometimes errors do occur.)


The Celtic League was established in 1961and has branches in the six Celtic Countries. It works to promote cooperation between these countries and campaigns on a broad range of political, cultural and environmental matters. It highlights human rights abuse, monitors all military activity and focuses on socio-economic issues

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