Unseen footage of Queen christening godchild discovered after 60 years

September 25th, 2008 - 4:25 pm ICT by ANI  

London, Sept 25 (ANI): For the first time after almost 60 years, an unseen cine film footage of the Queen, at the christening of one of her godchildren, has been discovered.

The film, featuring the then Princess Elizabeth cradling a baby boy, was nearly thrown away before being discovered by BBC Leeds producer Tony Parker, who came into possession of the tape after an appeal for archive material of the Second World War.

The baby being christened in the tape is Michael Knatchbull, a grandson of the late Earl Mountbatten, who was murdered when the IRA blew-up his boat in 1979.

Knatchbull, a television producer, one of the Queen’’s 30 grandchildren, never knew the film even existed.

The film features a relaxed and laughing Princess Elizabeth, two years before she succeeded the throne, holding her godson after the service at a church in Mersham in Kent. The film, unusual for its age, is in colour.

In the footage, Lord Mountbatten can be seen standing behind the future Queen looking approvingly at his grandson. At one point the princess’’s hat is almost blown off by the wind.

Victor Don, who lived in Kent, the doctor and surgeon to the Knatchbull family, made the film and left it to his nephew Tony Maule, 76, who lived in Harrogate, before dying.

Maule put the films away in a high level cupboard and they came to light when he handed them to Chris Powell, 45, from Knaresborough, North Yorks, who was raising funds for a special school in the area.

“This chap happened to sell lots of second-hand kit for charity and did the odd house clearance - and there the material was in the back of his car,” the Telegraph quoted parker, as saying. (ANI)

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