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Countdown to The King's Speech: King Edward VIII

For our penultimate profile, it is time to focus on the man at the centre of the greatest constitutional crisis of the 20th century, King Edward VIII who we first meet as the Prince of Wales or David to his family and friends. Some things you may not know about him are:


  • He was christened Edward Albert Christian George Andrew Patrick David, the last four names being the patron saints of the British Isles.


  • He went to Magdalen College, Oxford but left after eight terms without a degree.


  • When George V died, Edward flew to London from Sandringham, becoming our first monarch to take an aircraft.


  • He was also the first British monarch with a pilot’s licence which he had gained around 1920.


  • He was appointed Governor of the Bahamas during the Second World War.


  • There were postage stamps in 1936 with the face of Edward VIII, but no coins were ever issued.


  • He is the only English monarch to give up the throne voluntarily.


Playing the part of Edward VIII will be Alan Thornhill in a rare non-singing role although long-time Thespians aficionados will no doubt recall Alan's telling role in our highly lauded 2014 production of The Crucible. (See the Previous Productions page for more.)


The King’s Speech will be at Haslemere Hall at 7:30 pm on Thursday 16, Friday 17 and Saturday 18 May. Tickets are available from the Box Office on 01428 642161 or follow the link https://tickets.haslemerehall.co.uk/sales/genres/theatre/the-kings-speech

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