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November 26, 2023

Princesses Elizabeth and Margaret in the 1943 Play ‘Aladdin’ in Windsor, Berkshire

During the Second World War, the Queen (then Princess Elizabeth) and Princess Margaret spent much of their time in Windsor, safely away from the bombing in London. Between 1941 and 1944 they performed in and helped to stage a series of Christmas pantomimes to raise money for the Royal Household Wool Fund, which supplied knitting wool to make comforters for soldiers fighting at the Front.

Christmas pantomimes were performed at Windsor between 1941 and 1944, the first being Cinderella, in which both Princesses had leading roles. The pantomimes were staged in the Waterloo Chamber and were both written and produced by Hubert Tannar, Headmaster of the Royal School in Windsor Great Park. The performers included local children (some evacuees) and friends of the Princesses, with occasional help from service personnel based in the Windsor area. There was always an enthusiastic audience, and all monies raised from the admission charge went to the Wool Fund.

These photographs of Princesses Elizabeth and Margaret as they appeared in Aladdin, the Christmas pantomime performed at Windsor Castle in December 1943. Princess Elizabeth, the future Queen Elizabeth II, played Principal Boy whilst Princess Margaret played Princess of China.


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