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War & Decline

The Second World War

Telegram to Provost Fyffe of Dumfries from King Haakon VII

Period:
20th Century
Description:

The presence of the Norwegian Forces in the Dumfries area resulted in regular visits from Norwegian VIPs. During the course of the war King Haakon VII, Crown Prince Olav and the Norwegian Prime Minister all came to the town. James Hutcheon, the Town Clerk, recalls that on one occasion he had organised a civic reception for the Norwegian Prime Minister. When the train arrived at Dumfries Station he was unable to find the honoured guest,

 

“A wee stoutly built man carrying two well worn Gladstone bags came up to me as I stood at the end of the line and asked who was the VIP we were expecting, and when I answered the Prime Minister of Norway, he stunned me by saying “Good Heavens, but I am the Prime Minister of Norway.”

 

The King himself caused some surprise with his democratic behaviour,

 

“ I remember too, the free and easy manners. He was wearing a high-necked tunic and without loss of dignity he calmly undid it at the neck. He sat on the arm of the sofa I was sitting on and chatted to me and to others sitting round about. When he stood up and fixed his collar and pulled down his tunic as one man we leapt to our feet and stood at attention. He was a man but when it was required he could be a King.”

Materials/Media:
paper
Dimensions:
185mm x 119mm
Source:
Dumfries Museum & Camera Obscura
Accession number:
DUMFM:0205.7
Digital Number:
DMDO059n
Creation Date:
12-May-45
Copyright:
Dumfries & Galloway Council