Home Blog Page 3

The Duchess of Cornwall Sends Message of Support to Mark British Flowers Week


The Duchess of Cornwall sends a message of support to mark British Flowers Week

Today (Monday 15th June), is the start of this year’s British Flowers Week (15th -21st June) and the Duchess of Cornwall has sent a message of support to the initiative which celebrates British growers and florists across the land. Run by New Covent Garden Market, British Flowers Week is asking the public to join in the celebrations by placing British grown flowers in their windows, front porch or gate where passer-by by can see them.

The Duchess of Cornwall, herself a keen gardener and with a strong interest in British flowers, has also created her very own arrangement from flowers grown and picked by her at her home in Birkhall, Scotland. Her bouquet includes forgot-me-nots, cranesbill, Alchemilla, tulips, peonies, poppies, cow parsley and Solomon’s Seal. Her Royal Highness is also Patron of Floral Angels, a charity based at New Covent Garden’s Flower Market who recycle flowers used at weddings and events into smaller bouquets to send out to community organisations, such as care homes and hospices. Her Royal Highness mentions them in her message.

Photograph of HRH’s flower arrangement – British Flowers Week. Credit: Clarence House

Script of the video message as recorded by The Duchess of Cornwall:

“In these difficult times, when we are all searching for something to brighten our lives, there is nothing that can lift our spirits more than our native flowers and plants. They are nature’s healers. In our gardens, in our window boxes, or even in just a simple vase, their glorious scents and myriad of colours are veritable life enhancers.

She continued: “That is why, this year in particular, British Flowers Week is even more important than ever. As the Patron of Floral Angels, who are based at the Market, I would like to say a huge thank you to the New Covent Garden Market and The Garden Museum for making this celebration of the wealth and variety of British-grown flowers possible, and to the people behind them; the growers, the gardeners, the florists and everyone who appreciates their beauty and their contribution to our well-being. Keep safe and ‘say it with flowers’.”

This year, British Flowers Week also has the support of a number of prominent UK florists including Simon Lycett and Shane Connolly – both of whom have worked for the British Royal Family. Shane also holds The Prince of Wales’ Royal Warrant. The Garden Museum, which the Prince of Wales is a Patron of, The Real Flower Company and Flowers from the Farm are also working with New Covent Garden Market to celebrate the week. Shane Connolly said: “In the UK we have world-class growers producing an amazing variety of beautiful, natural, scented flowers and foliage. Every season brings something new and wonderful that will soothe or inspire us and remind us what nature really looks like. So I am proud and delighted to be a part of this year’s New Covent Garden Market British Flower Week celebrations and I encourage all of you to join in too, by placing your own British flowers or drawings in your window for others to enjoy”

Rebecca Barrett, Communications and Marketing Director at Covent Garden Market Authority who run British Flowers Week, said: “We are delighted and grateful for the support of The Duchess of Cornwall this year. I’m sure the stunning bouquet that she hand-picked herself will encourage others to put all things British in their own windows so that passersby can see them. This year, as we see non-essential retailers including florists and New Covent Garden’s Flower Market itself reopen to the public on Monday 15th June, it’s more important than ever to show your support for independent British florists and growers.”

Make sure you’re celebrating this British Flowers Week (15-21 June) by adding a beautiful British flower, bouquet, bunch of foliage or drawing to your window, and share a picture on social media using the hashtag #BritishFlowersWeek and tagging @MarketFlowers to show your support. Those who want to buy British flowers can find a nationwide list of where to buy them https://www.britishflowersweek.com/buying-british-flowers

The Prince of Wales and Duchess of Cornwall to Receive President Emmanuel Macron at Clarence House

The Prince of Wales and Duchess of Cornwall looking at graves during the Royal British Legion's Service of Remembrance, at the Commonwealth War Graves Commission Cemetery, in Bayeux, France, as part of commemorations for the 75th anniversary of the D-Day landings.

On behalf of Her Majesty’s Government, The Prince of Wales and The Duchess of Cornwall will receive The President of the French Republic at Clarence House to celebrate the 80th Anniversary of General de Gaulle’s ‘Appel’ on 18th June 1940.

The President of the French Republic will visit London on Thursday 18th June 2020 to celebrate the 80th Anniversary of General de Gaulle’s ‘Appel’ to the French population to resist the German occupation of France during WWII.  On behalf of Her Majesty’s Government, Their Royal Highnesses The Prince of Wales and The Duchess of Cornwall will formally receive President Emmanuel Macron at Clarence House with a Guard of Honour found by Number 7 Company Coldstream Guards accompanied by the Band of the Coldstream Guards.

Happy 99th Birthday Prince Philip

A new photograph of Her majesty The Queen and The Duke of Edinburgh has been released to celebrate his 99th birthday, Wednesday 10th June. The image was taken in the Quadrangle at Windsor Castle. Credit: Steve Parsons/PA Images

Happy 99th Birthday Prince Philip

Today we’re celebrating the 99th birthday of The Duke of Edinburgh!

Buckingham Palace has released a new photograph (above) of the Queen and the Duke of Edinburgh to celebrate his special day. The image was taken by Steve Parsons in the Quadrangle at Windsor Castle.

Born in Corfu, Prince Philip’s mother, Princess Alice went into labour on June 10th, 1921 and was placed on the dining room table, which was deemed the most comfortable place in the house for the 36-year-old mother to give birth. 

At 10am, the only son of Prince Andrew of Greece, arrived. Sixth in line to the Greek throne, he was registered in nearby Corfu town under the name of Philippos.

“He is a splendid, healthy child, thank God,” wrote Princess Alice to a relative three weeks later. 

Today, instead of facts, we’re looking at a few funny quotes made by The Duke of Edinburgh…

  • After being told that Madonna was singing the Die Another Day theme in 2002, the Duke commented: “Are we going to need ear plugs?” 
  • On a visit to Canada in 1969, Prince Philip announced: “I declare this thing open, whatever it is.” 
  • When asked to stroke a Koala bear, Australia 1992: “Oh no, I might catch some ghastly disease.” 
  • Shouting from the deck of Britannia in 1994 to the Queen who was chatting to her hosts on the quayside: “Yak, yak, yak; come on get a move on.”
  • On seeing Elton John’s gold Aston Martin in 2001 he said to the singer: “Oh it’s you that owns that ghastly car is it? We often see it when driving to Windsor Castle.” 
  • To a wealthy islander in the Cayman Islands, 1994: “Aren’t most of you descended from pirates?”
  • Meeting actress Cate Blanchett in 2008 he asked her to fix his DVD player because she worked in the film industry. “There’s a cord sticking out of the back,” he said. “Might you tell me where it goes?” 
  • Addressing a group of industrialists in 1961, he said: “I’ve never been noticeably reticent about talking on subjects about which I know nothing.” 
  • Meeting a young fashion designer at Buckingham Palace in 2009 he told him: “You didn’t design your beard too well, did you? You really must try better with your beard.” 

We’d love to hear your birthday messages for the Duke on his special day, so please head to our Facebook and Twitter pages to share.

Trooping The Colour 2020

Trooping the Colour 2019
Queen Elizabeth II rides to Buckingham Palace in London, on June 08, 2019, after attending Trooping the Colour at the Horse Guards Parade, the Queens birthday parade

Trooping The Colour 2020

Normally on the second Saturday of June, we see over 1400 parading soldiers, almost 300 horses and 400 musicians take part in an event to mark The Queen’s official birthday.

The Trooping of the Colour has marked the official birthday of the British Sovereign for over 250 years. But this year, due to the coronavirus pandemic, the Trooping of the Colour will be a private, scaled-back version of the celebration and will be held at Windsor Castle.

The parade, Commanded by Lieutenant Colonel Henry Llewelyn-Usher, will have a small group of Welsh Guards march and troop their colour, accompanied by a diminished group of the massed Bands of the Household Division.

Coverage of this year’s Trooping of the Colour will be shown on 13th June 2020 on BBC One from 10:30am BST.

In the meantime, here are a few facts you may not have known about the Trooping of the Colour…

  • Trooping the Colour has been a tradition of British infantry regiments since the 17th century, although the roots go back much earlier.
  • Traditionally on battlefields, a regiments colours were used as rallying points, ensigns would slowly march with the colours and flags to make sure that every soldier could recognise others of his own regiment. 
  • Since 1748 the Trooping of the Colour has also marked the official birthday of the British sovereign.
  • In 1981, 17-year-old Marcus Serjeant fired six blank cartridges directly at the Queen at the start of the Trooping the Colour ceremony. The shots startled the Queen’s horse, but she was able to bring it back under control within a few seconds. The teen was jailed for 5 years.
  • Some 113 words of command are given by the Officer in Command of the Parade.
  • It’s not uncommon for the guardsmen to faint during the parade, last year eight guardsmen fainted during a rehearsal for the event.
  • The Queen, then Princess Elizabeth, first attended in 1947 and has never missed Trooping the Colour since becoming Queen, apart from in 1955 when the whole event was cancelled due to a national rail strike.
  • Since 1987, The Queen has attended in a carriage rather than riding, which she did before that on 36 occasions, riding side-saddle and wearing the uniform of the regiment whose Colour was being trooped.

View coverage from previous years in the following issues of Royal Life:

Trooping The Colour 2019
Trooping The Colour 2019 Royal Life Magazine – Issue 43
Trooping the Colour
Trooping The Colour 2018 Royal Life Magazine – Issue 37
Trooping The Colour Issue 24
Trooping The Colour 2017 Royal Life Magazine – Issue 24
Trooping The Colour
Trooping The Colour 2015 Royal Life Magazine – Issue 17
Celebrating The Birth Of A Monarch- Trooping The Colour
Trooping The Colour 2014 Royal Life Magazine – Issue 11

HRH The Prince of Wales Sends Message of Thanks to Teachers


HRH The Prince of Wales sends message of thanks to teachers

The Prince of Wales, as Patron of Teach First, has recorded a video message of support, thanking teachers, parents and schools for all they are doing during this time.

In the message, His Royal Highness highlights: “Parents have done an astonishing job in such trying circumstances and to see teachers and schools going above and beyond for their pupils in response to this pandemic has been, in many instances, quite remarkable.”

Teach First is an education charity with a mission to build a fair education for all, by recruiting and training brilliant teachers to work in schools serving disadvantaged communities. The charity is working alongside their wider community to support the schools, teachers and pupils most affected by the pandemic and to help them to recover when schools fully return.

The Prince of Wales Shares Message of Congratulations and Support For The National Garden Scheme



National Garden Scheme Patron applauds the charity’s long-established support for nurses and pioneering work on gardens and health.   

At a time when the National Garden Scheme’s open gardens are closed because of COVID 19, our Patron has sent a warm message of support.   The message recorded in the garden of His Royal Highness’s Scottish home, Birkhall, reminds people of the effectiveness of the National Garden Scheme’s fundraising and the importance of its support for nursing charities. Confirming that he succeeded his grandmother, Queen Elizabeth The Queen Mother, as Patron of the charity 18 years ago, His Royal Highness goes on to say, ‘the National Garden Scheme is a remarkable organisation, with such a simple but effective mission.’   

He draws a comparison between the fact that when the scheme started all gardens charged an admission of one shilling, and that last year, in 2019, they raised a total of £4 million.   

Praising the current programme of Virtual Garden Visits which the charity has been running while its gardens have all been closed, His Royal Highness goes on to talk about gardens and health, which he says is a ‘theme we all know to be so important.’ 

National Garden Scheme CEO, George Plumptre commented, ‘We are all immensely grateful that our Patron The Prince of Wales has taken the time to give us such a warm and personal message of support. His Royal Highness’s love of gardens is well known, inherited from his grandmother who he succeeded as our Patron, and the various themes he articulates here so compellingly, from admiration for our charitable work, and emphasising the health benefits of gardens, will all strike a chord with our garden owners and supporters.’  

About the National Garden Scheme    

Founded in 1927 to raise funds for community nurses the National Garden Scheme has given away over £60million to nursing and health charities and is the largest single funder for many of its beneficiaries. The money is raised through the opening of exceptional gardens across England and Wales. In 2020, 3,700 gardens were scheduled to open for the Scheme but the current lockdown means that their gates have been closed for the first time in its history.      

Working together, the garden owners, volunteers and head office staff are compiling virtual garden visits to keep our gardens open and to generate much needed donations for their beneficiaries who are facing challenging times on the front line of the Coronavirus outbreak.  

“It’s wonderful that Macmillan’s longest-standing partner is the National Garden Scheme. For more than 35 years their lovely people have opened their gardens and raised over £17 million for Macmillan. That support means so much to all Macmillan nurses as we help people living with cancer to deal with the current crisis.”   

– Sheree Hall, Macmillan Lead Cancer Nurse at the National Garden Scheme Macmillan Centre in Chesterfield  

“I was amazed to discover that the National Garden Scheme is Marie Curie’s largest single funder and has given the charity nearly £10 million over 25 years. Their continued support makes such a difference to me and all Marie Curie Nurses on the frontline of the coronavirus crisis, as we continue to provide expert care and support to people at end of life.”     

– Tracy McWilliams, Marie Curie Nurse

The Coronation of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II


The Coronation of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II

Today we’re celebrating the 67th anniversary of Queen Elizabeth II’s Coronation Day!

At precisely 11.15 on the morning of June 2nd, 1953, the British nation and the world watched as Queen Elizabeth II’s spectacular Coronation ceremony began. Then aged just 26, the young monarch had ascended the throne upon the untimely death of her father, King George VI, on 6 February 1952.

The Coronation was a deeply symbolic and deeply moving occasion and there had been extensive preparations leading up to it, not the least by The Queen herself, who had reportedly spent hours at home going through her paces on a makeshift throne in the Palace bedroom, wearing white bedsheets tied together as her train.

Today we’re looking at a few facts you may not have known about the Coronation Day…

– The Coronation service fell into six parts: the recognition, the oath, the anointing, the investiture (which includes the crowning), the enthronement and the homage.

– Westminster Abbey has been the setting for every Coronation since 1066. Before the Abbey was built, Coronations were carried out wherever it was convenient, taking place in Bath, Oxford and Canterbury.

– The Queen’s grandmother, Queen Mary, was the first Queen to see a grandchild ascend to the throne. However, she died before the Coronation took place.

– Prince Charles was the first child to witness his mother’s coronation as Sovereign. The young Prince received a special hand-painted children’s invitation to his mother’s Coronation. Princess Anne did not attend the ceremony as she was considered too young.

– The Ministry of Food granted 82 applications for people to roast oxen if they could prove that by tradition, an ox had been roasted at previous Coronations.

– On 2 June 1953, news reached that Edmund Hilary and Tenzing Norgay had made it to the summit of Mount Everest. The Queen presented the 14 members of the expedition with special edition Coronation medals with the extra wording ‘Mount Everest Expedition’.

We’d love to hear your messages of congratulations on Her Majesty’s special day, so please head to our Facebook and Twitter pages to share. 

Have a lovely week,
The Royal Life Team

The Duchess of Cornwall Hails Volunteers ‘The Backbone of Our Country’


The Duchess of Cornwall hails volunteers ‘the backbone of our country’ as NHS Volunteer Responders reach 250,000 milestone at start of Volunteers’ Week

  • Role of NHS Volunteer Responders recognised by The Duchess of Cornwall at start of Volunteers’ Week (1-7 June 2020) with 250,000 tasks performed to date
  • Over the past few weeks The Duchess of Cornwall, The Duchess of Cambridge, The Countess of Wessex and The Duchess of Gloucester have joined the ranks of Volunteer Responders, taking part in ‘Check in and Chat’ calls with those self-isolating, vulnerable or elderly
  • The NHS and Royal Voluntary Service continue to encourage those needing support to self-refer by calling 0808 196 3646

To mark Volunteers’ Week and in recognition of a milestone quarter of a million tasks having been carried out by NHS Volunteer Responders, Royal Voluntary Service President, The Duchess of Cornwall, has thanked volunteers across the country for the many acts of kindness they provide.

The first week of June is traditionally Volunteers’ Week, when we celebrate our unsung heroes. This year in particular, we owe a great debt of thanks to all our wonderful volunteers, who have stepped forward in astonishing numbers, pulling together to support those affected by COVID-19. As the very proud President of the Royal Voluntary Service, I should like to say that you truly are the backbone of our country. To each and every volunteer – thank you from the bottom of my heart. 

HRH The Duchess of Cornwall

A quarter of a million tasks have now been carried out by the NHS Volunteer Responders recruited by Royal Voluntary Service to support the NHS and to help the most vulnerable to coronavirus. To aid people isolating during the pandemic, the volunteers have been providing grocery and prescription deliveries, lifts to medical appointments and ‘check in and chat’ calls.

With hundreds of thousands of volunteers on call from Carlisle to Canterbury, the NHS Volunteer Responders are able to leap into action wherever help is needed. The scheme now averages 7,000 tasks a day, and 98% of requests for help – which can be made by referrers or individuals – are delivered within 24 hours, the majority (70%) matched and delivered within two hours. The app, which quickly pinpoints the nearest volunteer using geo location, provides an effective safety net during the pandemic.

Members of the Royal Family have also joined the ranks of NHS Volunteer Responders for ‘check in and chat’ calls. Over the past few weeks, The Duchess of Cornwall, The Duchess of Cambridge, The Countess of Wessex and The Duchess of Gloucester have been making calls to people self-isolating in the community as part of the 250,000 tasks completed to date.

One of The Duchess of Cornwall’s calls was to Doris Winfield who has been self-isolating. Doris, aged 85 in Rickmansworth, said “Having a chat with The Duchess of Cornwall meant the world to me. I’ve been incredibly lonely over the last couple of months and it was wonderful to talk to her. We talked about life in isolation and shared hobbies. She was very interested in my family and how I was coping. It really cheered me up.”

One of the calls made by The Duchess of Cambridge was to Donna Williams (aged 42) a mother of two who is currently shielding her daughter Alessandra who has a rare form of Type 1 Diabetes.

One of The Countess of Wessex’s calls was to Harry Deboo, aged 89 from Liverpool. Harry lost his wife around three years ago and recently had a triple by-pass – he also received a letter saying he must self-isolate. Harry said “It was great to chat to The Countess of Wessex and really made my week. I have one son who doesn’t live locally – so I don’t get to see many people – especially now. I also like to keep the memory of my wife alive and it was great to chat about her. She really listened to every word and it was great to share our lockdown experiences together!”

The Duchess of Gloucester spoke with Beverly Webb aged 82 from Maidenhead. Beverly is housebound and lives alone and is missing the social interaction she had before lockdown.

The NHS and Royal Voluntary Service are encouraging anyone in need of support – whether they have been asked to shield by a health professional or are vulnerable for another reason – to seek help by calling 0808 196 3646.

Catherine Johnstone CBE, Chief Executive of Royal Voluntary Service said: “With Volunteers’ Week fast approaching we want to say a huge thank you to all the NHS Volunteer Responders ‘on call’ across the country and to our Royal Voluntary Service volunteers, many of whom have been supporting their community and the NHS for decades. 

“Volunteering has never been so critical and our volunteers, complementing those from other organisations, make a huge difference and give many people a much needed safety net.

“This is a marathon not a sprint and as members of families, social groups and communities go back to work as lockdown restrictions ease, the support of our volunteers will continue to be needed.”

Chief Nursing Officer for England, Ruth May said: “Thanks to the kindness of the British public at our greatest time of need, thousands of people across the country have been supported by our volunteers – we know that the smallest task has made a world of difference during these uncertain times.

“We are extremely grateful for the incredible efforts so far, which will continue over the coming months – in every village, town and city in England, there are people on hand who can help you and your loved ones so do not hesitate to get in touch if you need support. From a phone call if you’re isolating to getting help with shopping and medication, the NHS army of helpers are there for you.”

Royal Voluntary Service, the national volunteering charity, will also be hosting a special online event to thank its volunteers and the NHS Volunteer Responders for their contribution, particularly during the current time.

Her Royal Highness The Duchess of Cornwall, will give her personal message of thanks to volunteers at the event via video message. There will be other messages and exclusive performances from this year’s winners of The Greatest Dancer, Michael and Jowita, the London Contemporary Voices Choir and former Royal Harpist, Anne Denholm. 

The Royal Voluntary Service event of thanks will take place on Monday 1st June 2020 at 2pm at the Royal Voluntary Service Virtual Village Hall Facebook group, on the Royal Voluntary Service website and via the Virtual Village Hall YouTube channel

Laura Chow, Head of Charities at People’s Postcode Lottery who are supporting the Volunteers’ Week thank you event, said: “Volunteers give their time, energy and enthusiasm to help others and we are grateful for their selfless service. We’re delighted that players of People’s Postcode Lottery are supporting Royal Voluntary Service and are proud supporters of Volunteers’ Week.”

Royal Garden Parties – Fruit Scone Recipe


Royal Garden Parties

At this time of year, Her Majesty The Queen and other Members of the Royal Family are usually out and about enjoying the sunshine and attending various engagements and Garden Parties.

Royal Garden Parties date back to the 1860’s when Queen Victoria used to hold afternoon ‘breakfasts’ in the palace
gardens. These used to take place twice a year in the summer months until the 1950’s when a third party was added to the calendar, initially to take the place of debutantes’ presentation parties.

These parties are now a way of recognising and rewarding people in public service or as a celebration
of something.

As today would have been the third Garden Party of the season, we’re sharing some fun facts about Royal Garden Parties and Buckingham Palace’s fruit scone recipe, direct from the Royal Pastry Chefs.

Garden Party Facts

• 27,000 cups of tea are served.
• 20,000 sandwiches are served.
• 20,000 slices of cake are served.
• Over 400 waiting staff are required for each party.
• Ladies are to wear afternoon dress with a hat or fascinator.
• Gentlemen are to wear lounge suits or morning dress. Uniform or national dress is permitted.
• Tea and other refreshments are served on long buffet tables.
• On duty at Buckingham Palace are the Yeoman of the Guard, Gentlemen at Arms and Gentlemen Ushers.
• On duty at Holyroodhouse are the Royal Company Archers and High Constables of the Palace.
• Over 8,000 guests are invited to the three main events. Guest have to be recommended by their society or organisation before standing a chance to be selected.
• The Lord Chamberlain’s Office sends out the invitations on behalf of the Queen and makes all the arrangements for the day.

Fruit Scone Recipe

The Royal Pastry Chefs are happy to share their recipe for fruit scones, which traditionally would be served at Buckingham Palace every summer.

– 500g Plain Flour
– 28g Baking Powder
– 94g Butter
– 86g Sugar
– 2 Whole Eggs
– 140ml Butter Milk
– 100g Sultanas (Cover in hot water and leave to soak for 30 minutes)

– Preheat oven to 180 C
– Mix the flour, baking powder, butter and sugar together in a bowl, until a crumb is formed
– In a separate bowl, whisk the eggs and buttermilk together
– Add the liquid to the crumb mixture
– Continue to mix the dough, until it is smooth
– (Optional) Add the sultanas, and mix until evenly distributed
– Remove the dough from the bowl, flatten the dough and cover
– Leave to rest for approximately 30 minutes
– Roll out the dough to a thickness of 2.5 cm and cut to desired shape
– Rest the scones for another 20 minutes
– Gently egg was the top of the scones
– Bake in the oven for 10-12 minutes until golden brown
– Cool before serving with jam and clotted cream


Mental Health Awareness Week 2020: Mental Health Minute


Mental Health Awareness Week 2020: Mental Health Minute

Heads Together are proud to be a part of Mental Health Awareness Week, and support the incredible work of their charity partners and other individuals and organisations working to change the conversation on mental health.

This morning, they’re kicking it all off with the Mental Health Minute. For the third year running, Heads Together have teamed up with Radiocentre and at 10:59 today – Monday the 18th of May, the Mental Health Minute will play to over 20 million people across every radio station in the UK.

And this year, it’s bigger than ever, with more stations involved than ever before and an incredible group of people lined up to share this important message.

The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge will be joined for the one minute message by England captain Harry Kane, singer-songwriter Dua Lipa, two-time heavyweight champion Anthony Joshua, and actor David Tennant, as well as inspiring mental health advocates, ambassadors and volunteers from our charity partners have come together to voice this important message.

Don’t miss it! Tune in at 10:59 this morning!

“If you’re struggling, it’s important to talk about it. Or if someone you know is acting differently, it’s OK to ask how they are. Use this moment to send a message.” – The Duchess of Cambridge

Through the Mental Health Minute, Heads Together want to remind everyone that whoever you are and whatever you’re going through, we’re all connected and you are not alone.

It’s important you know that it’s ok to reach out for help if you need it, and their charity partners are there for you.


Latest news