Birth of King Charles III | British Newspaper Archive


Hot Off The Press – New Titles This Week

This week at The Archive we have added 70,105 brand new pages, with two brand new titles joining us from Cheshire and from Surrey. Meanwhile, we have updated 43 of our existing titles from across the British Isles, with updates to some of our most important regional holdings.

So read on to discover more about all of our new and updated titles of the week, as well as to find out about the birth of King Charles III back in November 1948, and how the country greeted the arrival of the future king.

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The first of our new titles of the week is the Esher News and Mail, which began life as the Esher News and Advertiser in 1936. Published in the Surrey town of Esher, which lies near the London-Surrey border, and is considered to be a London suburb, the Esher News and Mail appeared every Friday at the cost of one penny. Filling four pages, it circulated ‘in Esher and District.’

The Esher News and Mail demonstrated a clear predilection for local news; reporting on the latest from the local Women’s Institute, as well as reporting on crimes committed in the area. Meanwhile, the newspaper contained details of local weddings, funerals, and the town’s cricket results. Additionally, the Esher News and Mail took an in-depth look at matters that could potentially impact the local community, for example examining the ‘far-reaching proposals’ pertaining to the ‘expansion of educational facilities.’

Finally, the Esher News and Mail contained extensive columns devoted to ‘Situations Vacant,’ as well as to items that were ‘For Sale and Wanted.’ In 1986 the newspaper changed its name from the Esher News and Advertiser to the Esher News and Mail, by this time having expanded to fill many more pages, and to include photographs.

We travel now to the Cheshire market town of Macclesfield to introduce our next and final new title of the week, which is the Macclesfield Times. This title traces its origins back to 1872, when it was published as a Liberal newspaper. Appearing every week, initially on a Friday before shifting to a Thursday publication, the newspaper absorbed the Macclesfield Chronicle and Cheshire County News in 1906, renaming itself the Macclesfield Times and Chronicle and Congleton Times, before becoming the Macclesfield Times and East Cheshire Observer.

At this time the Macclesfield Times filled eight pages, and cost three pence. Like the Esher News and Mail it contained a slew of different advertisements, from ‘situations vacant’ to ‘houses for sale,’ from lost items to ‘accommodation wanted.’ The newspaper also featured extensive birth, marriage and death notices, which sat alongside ‘In Memoriam’ postings and other ‘Acknowledgements,’ as well as publishing obituaries for those who had recently passed.

Meanwhile, the newspaper contained the latest news from the area, with a look at the local town of Bollington’s latest news, with features like ‘Bollington Personalities.’ With a range of photographs, the Macclesfield Times captured local life through its columns, including the latest from the Macclesfield Town Council and news from local companies like Hovis.

The newspaper also took a look at sport, reporting on everything from billiards to hockey, from rugby to darts, from cycling to dance. The Macclesfield Times in the late 1940s had a special column dedicated to ‘Sports Commentary,’ with two of its eight pages given over to all matters sporting.

In 1952 the newspaper saw another merger, this time incorporating the Macclesfield Courier and Herald, which was founded in the early 1800s, to become the Macclesfield Times and Courier. By the 1980s the newspaper had become a freesheet tabloid, and was distributed to homes in the town of Macclesfield, as well as other communities in north-eastern Cheshire, including the smaller towns of Bollington and Prestbury. The Macclesfield Times ceased publication in 2011.

That’s it from our duo of new titles this week. However, we have also updated 43 of our existing titles, with particular highlights being the over 30,000 brand new pages that we have added to both the Nottingham Evening Post and to the Scunthorpe Evening Telegraph. We’ve also added over 17,000 brand new pages to the Grimsby Daily Telegraph, whilst over 10,000 brand new pages join the Chester Chronicle.

With an eye on our Scottish titles, we’ve added new pages to the Blairgowrie Advertiser, as well as to the Irvine Herald. Finally, we’ve also added new pages to the North Wales Weekly News.

14 November 1948 – The Birth of King Charles III

On the evening of 14 November 1948, the then Princess Elizabeth gave birth to her first child, a boy. The boy would be named Charles, and would go on to succeed her as monarch in September 2022. On 20 November 1948, new pages from the Chester Chronicle reveal how the country reacted to the exciting news, and especially how those living in the cathedral city of Chester responded to the news of the prince’s birth.

In the editorial section of the Chester Chronicle, 20 November 1948, it was observed how:

The birth of a Royal Prince to H.R.H. Princess Elizabeth and the Duke of Edinburgh has been hailed with joy throughout the length and breadth of Britain, the Dominions, and many other parts of the world. The Prince is in the direct line of heirship to the Throne. A joyous occasion it is to the British people because he is the first son of Princess Elizabeth; the grandson of King George VI and his Royal Consort: and the great-grandson of Queen Mary – all beloved and honoured figures in the nation’s life, and wherever the British flag is respected.

Indeed, the newspaper makes an observation regarding the popularity of the royal family, which had been bolstered by the birth of the prince:

In no period of history has the Crown surrounded itself with greater loyalty and more general affection. And the reason is clear. The present Royal House has set the nation a shining example of steadfastness to duty and of devoted regard not only for constitutional practice, but for all the virtues and sanctities that exalt a great nation. The firmly established succession of the Royal line seems a happy symbol of the stability of the state itself.

And babies born on the same day, and even during the same week, as Prince Charles, were to be ‘started off well in life,’ as the Chester Chronicle reported on 20 November 1948. The newspaper relates how a ‘Savings Bank account of £1 is to be opened for any baby born on November 14th in the City of Chester.’

Madeleine Jane Miller was one of the babies born in Chester on the same day as the prince, but her mother told the Chester Chronicle how: ‘I would have been more excited if it had been a boy, the same as the Princess’s.’

Meanwhile, new mother Violet Barnes told a Chester Chronicle reporter how ‘There’s nothing special about me, except this!,’ ‘this’ referring to her new-born son Philip Shane Barnes. Violet Barnes was hoping that Philip would be born on 14 November, a Sunday, as she knew Princess Elizabeth was expecting her baby that same day.

Finally, to mark the christening of Prince Charles in December 1948, the Chester Chronicle related how bell-ringers from Chester Cathedral ‘rang 1260 changes of Plain Bob Royal in 57 minutes,’ as the city celebrated the birth of the baby who would one day become king.

New Titles

TitleYears Added
Esher News and Mail1946, 1950-1951, 1955, 1958-1959, 1961, 1964-1965
Macclesfield Times1949
Updated Titles

This week we have updated 43 of our existing titles.

You can learn more about each of the titles we add to every week by clicking on their names. On each paper’s title page, you can read a FREE sample issue, learn more about our current holdings, and our plans for digitisation.

TitleYears Added
Alderley & Wilmslow Advertiser1956, 1958, 1973
Bebington News1995, 1997
Birkenhead News1997
Birmingham Weekly Post1900
Blairgowrie Advertiser1995
Brentwood Gazette1997
Bristol Evening Post1963, 1970
Caterham Mirror1996
Chester Chronicle1923-1924, 1927-1928, 1933, 1935-1936, 1948, 1952, 1954-1955, 1957, 1962-1963
Chester Chronicle (Frodsham & Helsby edition)1995-1996
Dorking and Leatherhead Advertiser1996
Ely Town Crier1994
Evening Despatch1905
Formby Times1996
Grimsby Daily Telegraph1998
Hinckley Times1915
Horley & Gatwick Mirror1996
Horncastle Target1995
Ilfracombe Chronicle1877
Irvine Herald1996
Kent & Sussex Courier1997
Leatherhead Advertiser1995-1996
Loughborough Echo1913
Manchester Evening News1900
North Wales Weekly News1996
Nottingham Evening Post1974-1976, 1978
Nottingham Guardian1956, 1961, 1963-1964, 1967, 1969-1971
Ormskirk Advertiser1997, 1999
Ripley Express1993
Royston and Buntingford Mercury1996
Ruislip & Northwood Gazette1996
Runcorn & Widnes Herald & Post1996
Runcorn Guardian1967, 1969, 1971
Scunthorpe Evening Telegraph1980, 1990, 1996-1997
Southport Visiter1996-1997
Staines Informer1996
Stanmore Observer1996-1997
Stockport Express Advertiser1994
Stockport Times1996-1997
Sunbury & Shepperton Herald1996
Sutton Coldfield Observer1997
Torbay Express and South Devon Echo1937
Uckfield Courier1997

You can keep up to date with all the latest additions by visiting the recently added page.  You can even look ahead to see what we’re going to add tomorrow.


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