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A Royal Welcome For The Queen In Sherborne

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Published at 10:07am 2nd May 2012.

Thousands of people lined the streets to welcome the Queen and Duke Of Edinburgh to Sherborne yesterday (1 May) Crowds which had gathered since early morning despite the wet weather conditions, waited for a glimpse of the Royal party and cheered and waved union flags to greet them.

The visit took place on the first day of their two-day Diamond Jubilee Tour of the south west.

They arrived in the south west by royal train at Sherborne Station  where they were met  by Mrs Anthony Pitt-Rivers, Her Majesty's Lord Lieutenant for the County of Dorset.

They made their way to Sherborne Abbey where they visited  a food fair and met local schoolchildren at a Mad Hatter’s Tea Party outside the Abbey.  The Duke toured the Abbey and viewed an exhibition by local artisans.

Before leaving the Abbey, the Queen unveiled a design for a flagstone, later to be carved and laid there to commemorate her visit.

The next stop was Digby Memorial Church Hall where they attended a 1952 tea party organised by adult and community services at Dorset County Council.  Guests included staff and residents from both The Hayes Residential Home and Shielings Day Centre in Sherborne.

The Queen and Duke of Edinburgh spent 15 minutes at Digby Hall talking to guests and meeting official representatives, including council staff, representatives of Carers, and voluntary organization, including Popp and local dignitaries.

Mrs Bown, 81, a resident from The Hayes, was among the guests.  She said:  “I have been looking forward to this event since I received the invitation a few weeks ago. 

“It’s a very special occasion and not many people my age get a chance to meet the Queen.  It’s been a special day and one I will always remember.”

Debbie Ward, director for adult and community services at Dorset County Council, said: “We were delighted to welcome Her Majesty the Queen and His Royal Highness the Duke of Edinburgh to this event.  We wanted to ensure as many people as possible had the chance to take part in the celebrations and almost 100 people were packed into the Digby Hall. The Queen was wonderful chatting to people and smiling at everyone. It was a great privilege and honour".

John Wilson, Chairman of Dorset County Council, added:

“What a great and memorable day for Dorset and what a truly magnificent number of people who turned out to welcome Her Majesty despite the weather.

“Sherborne was the Royal party’s only stop in Dorset and many people had travelled for miles to take part in this historic occasion.

“It was a great honour for local residents that the Queen decided to start her Jubilee tour of the south west here.  It will be a day to remember for everyone who took part, particularly for many of the older people who may not otherwise have had a chance to see the Queen at such close quarters.”


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