Buckingham Palace – London – Tuesday afternoon 3rd June 2014 –Posted: June 4, 2014
Me, Carol, Dot Reynolds and Elwyn Wilson outside Buckingham Palace
Being a Chairman of the Council means Carol and I get an invite to a Garden Party at Buckingham Palace. There are also invites for two officers at TRDC, Dot Reynolds and Elwyn Wilson joined us and we travelled to London together. The Garden party gates are opened at 3.00pm or so it said on the invite, but they were open at 2.30pm, probably because of the queue, so we went straight in. Passing through the palace rooms out to the garden which was mostly lawn with lakes and flower beds at the back. We were lucky enough to have a reasonable day, even though it did manage a sharp shower just after the Queen made her entrance. There were probably 4000 guests so you need to be nimble on your feet to get a close look. We managed a distant view as she descended the palace stairs into the garden, I got told off by Carol as I took a photo of HM in her yellow suit. Our tea tent was on the other side of the line across the lawn the Queen took on her way to her tent. We could not get on the other side as we walked the line, and that is when the umbrellas went up. We didn’t have one, so we got a little damp, ending up in the lemonade tent to get out of the downpour. The lady next to me had a yellow suit on, and I mentioned to her that the Queen had a similar colour, it was only then I realised she was Norma Major standing next to her husband Sir John Major, a previous Prime Minister. The Queen was accompanied by Prince Philip, Prince Charles and Camilla, Prince Edward Earl of Wessex and his wife Sophie, and The Duke of Kent who we had met a few weeks previously. He didn’t recognise me! We bumped into Paul Morris (Mayor of Hertsmere) and his wife Linda and County Councillor Chris Hayward. We had our tea and cakes and I chatted to a 97 year old gent who used to be the Captain of a Royal Navy ship. He had had a very varied life visiting many countries, and as we said goodbye he whispered in my ear that he also used to be a 007. We wandered around the garden and lakes and listened to the two bands. The Queen departed at 5.50pm as she’s apparently opening something big tomorrow, and we soon followed her home. I was feeling quite tired after all the walking with my new knee. The afternoon was an interesting, enjoyable and memorable experience with good company.
The Queen descending the steps
Carol, Linda, Paul Morris Mayor of Hertsmere and me
More photos on flickr