King Amanullah in Manchester

Among Royal visitors received at the works … King Amanullah of Afghanistan in 1928, when to the particular disappointment of the work-girls with their machines decorated in Afghan colours his beautiful Queen Souriya was kept away by indisposition.

Source: Metropolitan-Vickers Electrical Co 1899-1949. John Dummelow, Grace’s Guide.

On 28 March 1928 King Amanullah was in Manchester. As well as visiting Metropolitan-Vickers, he sailed on the Manchester ship canal, had lunch with the Mayor, visited two cotton mills and went down the Bradford Colliery Co’s Bradford pit.1

King Amanullah (holding lamp) and a narrow gauge railway at the Bradford colliery.

  1. Afghan King At Manchester, The Times, London, England, 29 March 1928

King Amanullah on the Southern Railway

Silent film from 1928.

Our Royal Guests – Britain welcomes Amanullah, King of Afghanistan and Souriya, his beautiful Queen

Dover, Kent and London.


The King and Queen walk beside a train on a railway platform at Dover with their entourage and are greeted by men in white wigs; one reads to them from a book – presumably some kind of traditional greeting; the book is handed to the King, the Queen is given a bunch of flowers.

At a London railway station (probably Victoria) we see the royal party getting off the train and being greeted by King George V and Queen Mary; they are all seen shaking hands with various military dignitaries. The two Kings walk past a line of guards in busbys outside the station then get into an open carriage under a canopy of international flags outside the station; the two Queens can be made out in the background getting into their open carriage.


Nasrullah Khan and the Dockers Umbrella

The Workington-based Times & Star describes an 1895 visit to weapons ranges at Silloth in the UK by The Shahzada Nasrullah Khan, second son of the Amir of Afghanistan. It also says he was impressed by the Liverpool Overhead Railway.

When a Silloth weapons range welcomed Afghanistan royalty

It has to be remembered that the Shahzada, who reportedly didn’t speak English too well, was undertaking a long and arduous state visit, was only 20 years of age. He’d travelled all over the country, albeit in his personal train, having to endure innumerable long and boring addresses from assorted “very important people.”

What did interest him were examples of technological development, he was much taken with Liverpool’s Overhead Railway.

Source: Times & Star 2009-07-02