Mitcham Pageant

Pageant type


Information drawn from 'Survey of Historical Pageants' undertaken by Mick Wallis; with thanks to Heather Constance of Merton Heritage and Local Studies Centre.

Jump to Summary


Place: The Green (?) (Mitcham) (Mitcham, Surrey, England)

Year: 1922

Indoors/outdoors: Outdoors

Number of performances: 1


22 June 1922

The venue of the pageant performance was probably Mitcham Cricket Green.

Name of pageant master and other named staff

  • Director [Pageant Master]: Devenish, Mrs Weston

Names of executive committee or equivalent


Names of script-writer(s) and other credited author(s)

Names of composers


Numbers of performers


Financial information


Object of any funds raised


Linked occasion

The Coronation of King George V.

Audience information

Prices of admission and seats: highest–lowest


Associated events

  • Street procession
  • Sports events

Pageant outline

Key historical figures mentioned

  • Elizabeth I (1533–1603) queen of England and Ireland

Musical production


Newspaper coverage of pageant


Book of words


Other primary published materials


References in secondary literature


Archival holdings connected to pageant

  • Merton Heritage and Local Studies Centre holds a copy of the programme, as well as some photographs.

Sources used in preparation of pageant



This is an early example of an historical pageant held to celebrate a coronation, in this case that of George V in 1911. The years before the First World War saw great enthusiasm for all things Elizabethan. This was reflected in rising popularity of mock-Tudor architecture, the ‘Merrie England’ preoccupations of the folk song and dance revival, and the burgeoning of an increasingly commodified Shakespeare cult. These were the years that saw Stratford-upon-Avon establish itself as a major tourist destination, and the staging of ‘Shakespeare’s England’, a massively elaborate summer-long exhibition at Earl’s Court in London, featuring life-size models of Tudor buildings and a replica of the Revenge, one of the ships that helped fend off the Spanish Armada in 1588.1

The focus of the Mitcham pageant accorded with such developments; indeed, the pageant was entirely concentrated on the Elizabethan period, paying particular attention to one of the several visits to the locality made by the queen. The action culminated with a scene portraying the bringing of the news that the Spanish Armada had set sail for England.

Photographs from the time indicate that there was also a procession of performers through Mitcham.

1 Paul Readman, ‘The place of the Past in English Culture, c.1890-1914’, Past and Present, 186 (2005), esp. 166-8


How to cite this entry

Angela Bartie, Linda Fleming, Mark Freeman, Tom Hulme, Alex Hutton, Paul Readman, ‘Mitcham Pageant’, The Redress of the Past,