The Watford Observer is again delighted to be teaming up with its friends at Watford Museum to take another journey back to the past to recall the key events and dates that helped shape the town’s future.

The sixth part of '50 events and dates that shaped Watford’ recalls the violent scenes in the town 119 years ago - the Coronation Riot of 1902.

The museum's volunteer archivist Christine Orchard said: "Exciting events were planned in Watford to celebrate the Coronation of King Edward VII on June 28, 1902, including a procession with a band, a sports event in Cassiobury Park and a bonfire. However, the Coronation and celebrations were put off when Edward became seriously ill with appendicitis requiring surgery.

"Naturally, many people felt denied their day of entertainment. Disappointment turned to anger and, in the days following the postponement, there were scenes of drunkenness, assault, arson and malicious damage in the town.

"The Watford Observer of June 28, headed their report about the riot with the words 'Disgraceful scenes. Two shops sacked. Riot Act read.'.

"Many were arrested and this photograph shows the rioters being taken from King Street Police station into the High Street.

"The Coronation took place on August 9, 1902 and festivities finally took place in the town."

Watford Museum is now open Thursday to Saturday, 10am to 5pm. No booking is necessary but Covid prevention measures are still in place to keep visitors safe.