Queen breaks with tradition again today as she declines to accept flowers

For a second week Queen drives off after church without stopping to greet crowd

  • The Queen usually allows waiting children to present her with flowers
  • Many families hoping to meet Her Majesty were left disappointed last week
  • Today police informed hopefuls that she would still not accept flowers
  • Among well-wishers was Sienna Wheeler, eight, who is in a wheelchair

Well-wishers hoping to meet the Queen were again left disappointed yesterday after she chose not to accept flowers for the second week in a row.

A crowd of around 250 had hoped they would be in luck after she broke with the tradition last week.

Sienna Wheeler, eight, who is in a wheelchair after a hip operation, had travelled to St Mary Magdalene church in Sandringham from Bury St Edmunds, Suffolk, with her sister Imogen, ten, and grandfather David Branton, 69.

The Queen doesn't accept flowers from wellwishers for the second week running as she attends church
The Queen doesn’t accept flowers from wellwishers for the second week running as she attends church

 

She  said: ‘I don’t really mind that I could not give her my flowers. It was just a lovely to see her.’

The Queen broke with tradition last week by declining to accept flowers from children as she left morning service at St Mary Magdalene church.

Around a dozen children including a girl in a wheelchair had hoped that she would have a change of heart and hopefully turned up with flowers today.

But police officers monitoring the crowd told the youngsters that the Queen would still not be accepting them.

Sienna's father: 'We brought flowers along, but the Queen didn't take them... We don't want a sob story'
Sienna’s father: ‘We brought flowers along, but the Queen didn’t take them… We don’t want a sob story’

 

Her Majesty leaves church on the royal Sandringham estate in Norfolk
The Queen drives off

Her Majesty leaves church on the royal Sandringham estate in Norfolk without taking flowers today

 

The Queen, who was dressed in a beige coat and matching hat, instead came straight out of church and was driven away in her maroon Bentley, accompanied by her cousin Lady Mary Colman.

Some children left their bouquets in a pile outside the 13th century church after police said the flowers would be taken to Sandringham House later.

Other youngsters handed their floral gifts to guests of the Queen who were walking the 600m back to Sandringham House with Prince Philip.

‘Veteran Royal watcher Mary Relph said she thought the Queen’s tradition of accepting flower outside church had now ‘finished”

One of the Royal guests who accepted flowers told the child’s mother: ‘I am sorry. It is a great disappointment.’

Elizabeth Quintrell, 72, waited three hours in the cold with her great-granddaughters Kiera Quintrell, eight, and Megan Radford, six, only to be told that the girls would not be allowed to hand over their flowers.

Mrs Quintrell of Peterborough, Cambridgeshire, said: ‘It was a great shame. There were only a few children here with bouquets so it would not have taken very long.

‘I brought the two girls to Sandringham House in the summer and they saw the place where the Queen has her Christmas tree.

‘I told them we would come back over Christmas and they might be able to give her some flowers and they had been looking forward to it.

A little boy watches the Queen leave last week, as he clutches a bouquet he had hoped to give her
A little boy watches the Queen leave last week, as he clutches a bouquet he had hoped to give her

‘We made some special bouquets with red, white and blue flowers and I got them up at 6.30am so we could drive over.

‘It was quite disappointing to be told that the Queen would not be taking flowers personally, but I suppose if I was her age, I probably wouldn’t want to do it either.’

Sienna Wheeler, eight, of Bury St Edmunds, Suffolk, who was in a wheelchair after a hip operation last month was also told that she would not be able to hand over flowers to the Queen.

She and her sister Imogen, ten, went to the church with their grandfather David Branton, 69, but could only watch as the Queen got into her car.

Sienna said: ‘I don’t really mind that I could not give her my flowers. It was just a lovely to see the Queen.’

 

The little boy was comforted by his mother after the Queen broke with tradition by not stopping
The little boy was comforted by his mother after the Queen broke with tradition by not stopping

 

Mr Branton of Spalding, Lincolnshire, said: ‘We did bring some flowers along, but the Queen didn’t take them. We were told to leave them and the girls were happy with that.

‘We don’t want a sob story. The girls were just thrilled to see the Queen and they were warned that there was a chance that he Queen might not accept the bouquets.’

Veteran Royal watcher Mary Relph said she thought the Queen’s tradition of accepting flower outside church had now ‘finished’.

Speaking outside the church, she added: ‘I don’t want to say anything about it.’

The Bishop of Rochester, the Right Rev James Langstaff, preached at the service today before joining the Queen at Sandringham House. Last week Buckingham Palace dismissed suggestions that the Queen was not accepting flowers as she did not want to be late for lunch.

A palace spokesman said: ‘Her Majesty is always grateful whenever people wish to present flowers and she accepted many flowers on Christmas Day. However, she does not accept them in person on every occasion.’

 

 

Source : Daily Mail

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