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photograph of current display in the Grand Vestibule

A display highlighting the interaction between the monarchy and the wider world

Tonga

Coconut basket 1953

RCIN 74626

These baskets represent an industry which Queen Salote of Tonga, who presented them, helped re-establish on the island of Tonga. Queen Salote had endeared herself to the British public after the 1953 Coronation service at Westminster Abbey, when she refused to let her carriage hood be put up despite the rain, and rode back to Buckingham Palace waving to the crowds.

A round coconut basket with a semi-circular handle decorated with black stripes and with black crosses woven into the bowl.
 

This basket, a pair with RCIN 74626, represents an industry which Queen Salote of Tonga, who presented them, had re-establish

Coconut basket ©

During The Queen's Commonwealth Tour in 1953–54, Her Majesty visited Tonga, arriving by flying boat before being welcomed by a feast of yams, lobsters, fruit, pigs and coconut milk. These baskets were presented by Queen Salote during the visit. They were woven by local women, who develop distinctive patterns identifying their manufactures.