With the birth of the royal baby expected soon, and the announcement from The Royal Mint that babies born on the same day would receive a ‘lucky’ silver penny, I was intrigued to see whether there were records showing examples of other commemorative gifts for royal births in history.
Looking through records here at The National Archives, I found a file from the Ministry of Food (MAF 99/627) relating to the commemorative food gift parcel given to mothers of babies born on 14 November 1948 – the same day as Prince Charles, HRH The Prince of Wales.
Contained within the file is correspondence from the Commonwealth Gift Centre, part of the Ministry of Food, to Buckingham Palace suggesting the idea of a food gift parcel for mothers of babies born on the same day as the royal prince. A reply was received from Buckingham Palace stating that ‘Her Royal Highness [Princess Elizabeth – now Queen Elizabeth II] thinks that this is an excellent idea and desires me to ask you to go ahead with it.’
The commemorative food gift parcels sent from the Commonwealth Gift Centre were done with the help of the Women’s Voluntary Services, who did the sending of the parcels, and the Central National Registration Office, who scrutinised the birth certificates and application forms of those that applied. Continue reading »