Sunday, May 14, 2017

Emperor Haile Selassie visits Bishop's Castle



I once quoted Michael Coles' Reminiscences of Wistanstow:
In 1936 the Italians invaded Abyssinia and the Emperor Haile Selassie had to flee, He was given refuge by this country and one day whilst I was at Craven Arms railway station he arrived with his entourage to stay at Walcot Hall on the way to Lydbury North, which was a mansion owned by the Stephenson Ink people.
This film shows Haile Selassie at Bishop's Castle. I suspect it was shot on the same visit, if not on the same day that Michael Coles saw him.

2 comments:

brandnewguy said...

While at Walcot Hall, he had an unintentionally hilarious encounter with a writer, Ida Gandy, who had moved to Shropshire and later wrote a book, "An Idler In The Shropshire Borders", in which she related her encounter with the Emperor when invited to dine at Walcot Hall:
"He spoke no English and unfortunately my hosts mistakenly credited me with fluent French, and placed me next to him – that is, in an armchair at least a couple of yards away. In spite of my intense admiration and sympathy for him and his country, I found it impossible to proclaim it across this horrid gap, especially as the other guests seemed to be sitting in dead silence. In desperation I told him how I and my family had raced toy ducks down a mountain stream that morning."

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