For most Coronations past, besides the official procession of royals and dignitaries there would have also been grand coaches arriving at the Abbey carrying peers and peeresses. Of course by 1953 this was not the case.
Chips Channon wrote:
‘Coaches and robes, tiaras and decorations… Winnie Portarlington announced at luncheon that she has a harness but no coach, Circe [the Marchioness of Londonderry] has a coach but no horses, Mollie Buccleuch has no postilions – but five tiaras.
But at least three peers arrived in coaches, according to the Dowager Duchess of Devonshire in her memoirs Wait for Me!:
Andrew and I despatched the Chatsworth state coach to London so we could arrive at the Abbey in style. The coach was tested for roadworthiness, a pair of stout grey horses and a coachmen were hired from the Red House Stables in Darley Dale and two burly Chatsworth farm men crammed into Devonshire livery to ride as attendants at the rear. The coach was taken by train to London and the horses stabled at Watney’s Brewery. Although it looks large, the coach has surprisingly little room for passengers. On that cold, wet June morning Andrew and I could just squeeze Stoker on the seat between us as we trundled down Park Lane to Piccadilly. We waited for Gerry Wellington’s coach to reach us from Apsley House then processed at a stately pace to St James’s Street, where the crowd was treated to the sight of the handsome Henry Bath (on his own as he was between marriages) in a well-sprung yellow coach, a faster version than ours, drawn by a pair of Hackneys, smart as paint and stepping out. The people waiting in the empty, rainy streets, many of whom had been stationed there all night, were pleased to have something to look at.
Our route took us to Victoria Street and then we were lost. Neither the coachman nor our farm men knew London and our only communication with them was by a string attached to a button on the coachmen’s coat. Energetic jerking told the coachman something was wrong but not what. Poor Andrew was sweating with anxiety that we would be late and Stoker would not find Moucher. He lowered his window, a tricky business as it was made of thin real glass and the leather strap that held it was so highly polished it could have slipped from his hand. He put his head out, craning round so the coachman could hear his instructions, ‘Turn right, turn left’ – a scene that delighted the crowd – till at last we arrived at the entrance to the Abbey.
'Stoker' is her son, the current Duke, who served as page to his grandmother 'Moucher,' Mistress of the Robes.
Elsewhere I have read that as the coachman (the "burly farm man") helped the duchess alight from the carriage to enter the Abbey, he informed her that a prized cow at Chatsworth had delivered a calf that morning.
See link below for a great view of the Devonshire coach, on display at Chatsworth last year.
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