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A little bird told me you like gin very much! Duchess of Cornwall delights 94-year-old war veteran with an usual gift at Royal Chelsea Hospital

The Duchess of Cornwall gave a bottle of gin to a 94-year-old war veteran at the Royal Chelsea Hospital today.

Camilla presented John Ley, who is an in-pensioner at the hospital, with a bottle of Highgrove Gin in a box decorated with ribbon to add to his gin collection.

The Duchess was at the home of the Chelsea pensioners for the annual Founder's Day Parade which commemorates the founding of the hospital by King Charles II in 1682.

Camilla, Duchess of Cornwall met Chelsea Pensioners today as she visited the Royal Hospital Chelsea to review The Founder's Day Parade

Charles said the regiment's history had shown the qualities of its soldiers' values, 'service, selflessness and sacrifice'

Camilla met Chelsea Pensioners today as she visited the Royal Hospital Chelsea to review The Founder's Day Parade while her husband Charles presented an army regiment of 500 soldiers with their new colours


Mr Ley invited Camilla into his room where she handed over the 'special' gift.

'I've brought you a little present. It's very special,' she said, as she presented him with the gin.

'I hope you're going to make the most of it

'A little bird did tell me that you like it very much,' she said.

Mr Ley said he felt 'very honoured' to receive the gift from Camilla, adding: 'I shall certainly do it justice.

'It's very good. Well, it would be, wouldn't it?'

While in his room, Camilla noticed a photograph on the wall of Mr Ley with Prince Harry who attended the Founder's Parade previously.

Commenting on how he believed Harry would be a great officer, Camilla agreed with Mr Ley and said he is an 'excellent officer'.

Mr Ley added: 'He won't let us down.'
The parade commemorates the founding of the hospital by King Charles II in 1682The parade commemorates the founding of the hospital by King Charles II in 1682
Camilla, Duchess of Cornwall holds on to her hat during windy conditions as she visits the Royal Hospital Chelsea to review The Founder's Day Parade

The Duchess of Cornwall attended the annual Founder's Day Parade at the Royal Hospital Chelsea, London

The Duchess of Cornwall attended the annual Founder's Day Parade at the Royal Hospital Chelsea, London

Camilla also met George Bayliss, who turns 92 next week, and admired his flower arranging while also commenting that she too likes to work with flowers.

'I love doing flowers too. It's a wonderful thing to do. It keeps you very calm and happy,' she said.

Adding: 'I hope somebody has taken a nice photograph of this. It's very impressive.'

Mr Bayliss, who joked that he was '21 and a bit', said the flower arranging was 'all my own work' and described Camilla as 'quite nice'.

Wearing a green Fiona Clare coat dress and a matching Philip Treacy hat adorned with feathers, Camilla met a number of the 300 in-pensioners as well as staff at the hospital, both in the Margaret Thatcher Infirmary and in the grounds at the parade.


Wearing a green Fiona Clare coat dress and a matching Philip Treacy hat adorned with feathers, Camilla met a number of the 300 in-pensioners as well as staff at the hospitalWearing a green Fiona Clare coat dress and a matching Philip Treacy hat adorned with feathers, Camilla met a number of the 300 in-pensioners as well as staff at the hospital

She said that of the 111 pensioners who fought in the Second World War, some may have fought alongside her father in North AfricaShe said that of the 111 pensioners who fought in the Second World War, some may have fought alongside her father in North Africa

Camilla shared a joke with many of the staff at the hospital in LondonCamilla shared a joke with many of the staff at the hospital in London

After the parade, which featured a large number of the Chelsea pensioners and took place in glorious sunshine, Camilla made a short speech.

'As the proud daughter of a highly decorated soldier I am honoured to be here today to review the parade at this very special event.

'331 years ago this great institution was opened to be a home to old or disabled soldiers but surveying your resplendent scarlet ranks I can only see evidence of soldiers,' she said.

She said that of the 111 pensioners who fought in the Second World War, some may have fought alongside her father in North Africa.

With a nod to the servicemen and servicewomen who will join them in future, she said: 'Before too long you will no doubt welcome those who recently served in the Gulf, and eventually in Afghanistan.'

Referring to those who acted as a guard of honour at Margaret Thatcher's funeral, she said they were a 'salutary reminder to the public, of the importance of service to one's country'.
After the parade, which featured a large number of the Chelsea pensioners and took place in glorious sunshine, Camilla made a short speechAfter the parade, which featured a large number of the Chelsea pensioners and took place in glorious sunshine, Camilla made a short speech

Meanwhile her husband Prince Charles donned his ceremonial attire and presented an army regiment of 500 soldiers with their new colours.

The Prince of Wales, as Colonel-in-Chief of The Mercian Regiment, formally presented each of the unit's four battalions - three regular, one territorial - with their new silk colours today at the Sixways Stadium in Worcester, Worcestershire.

During the ceremony, an affair rich with tradition, he addressed the troops parading for the occasion and told them, 'I am endlessly proud of you all', adding that the regiment's history had shown the qualities of its soldiers' values, 'service, selflessness and sacrifice'.
Prince Charles, Prince of Wales, Colonel-in-Chief The Mercian Regiment presents New Colours to all four Battalions of the Regiment at Sixways StadiumPrince Charles, Prince of Wales, Colonel-in-Chief The Mercian Regiment presents New Colours to all four Battalions of the Regiment at Sixways Stadium

The Duke of Cornwall presented new regimental and Queen's colours to each battalion, wearing the black number one ceremonial dress of The Mercians, in front of hundreds of members of the regiment's extended family, including young children and veterans.

It is the first time the unit has held such a presentation since its formation in 2007.

Traditionally, the flags would form a rallying point for the men of the regiment on the battlefield, and are emblazoned with the names of famous campaigns in which the unit has fought.

Addressing the parade, Charles said: 'Today symbolises a special and historic moment of the whole Mercian regimental family, something serving soldiers, veterans, families and friends will all equally feel proud to be part of.

'As your Colonel-in-Chief I am also endlessly proud of you all and especially pleased to be able to share this day with you.'

He said the regiment's history had shown the qualities of its soldiers' values, 'service, selflessness and sacrifice'.

He said the regiment's history had shown the qualities of its soldiers' values, 'service, selflessness and sacrifice'

The Duke of Cornwall said: 'As your Colonel-in-Chief I am also endlessly proud of you all and especially pleased to be able to share this day with you'

The Duke of Cornwall said: 'As your Colonel-in-Chief I am also endlessly proud of you all and especially pleased to be able to share this day with you'


The Prince added: 'The last few years have seen tremendous courage, professionalism and self-sacrifice from those who have served on a whole succession of operational commitments.'
'We salute those who were wounded in action and acknowledge the consequences of operational services and pledge ourselves anew to support those who bear the cost'

He also praised the families for their 'support and resilience' while the regiment has served abroad, most recently in Afghanistan.

'Today, it is right that as a regiment we remember with gratitude and pride those who tragically are no longer with us and we also remember their loved ones whose lives will never be the same again and who are with us on this occasion,' he said.

'We salute those who were wounded in action and acknowledge the consequences of operational services and pledge ourselves anew to support those who bear the cost.'
He said: 'Today, it is right that as a regiment we remember with gratitude and pride those who tragically are no longer with us and we also remember their loved ones whose lives will never be the same again and who are with us on this occasion'He said: 'Today, it is right that as a regiment we remember with gratitude and pride those who tragically are no longer with us and we also remember their loved ones whose lives will never be the same again and who are with us on this occasion'

Charles added: 'The colours I have just presented continue to represent the heritage, fighting spirit and soul of this fine regiment.
'The colours I have just presented continue to represent the heritage, fighting spirit and soul of this fine regiment'

'Each of you will also have your own special thoughts as to what makes the regiment of today what it is.

'That might be a friend you made for life, a time of challenge, a moment of desperate sadness, one of utter joy or something you have found enriching and which you have experienced with colleagues and loved ones.'
Speaking to the 500 soldiers, the Prince said: Charles added: 'The colours I have just presented continue to represent the heritage, fighting spirit and soul of this fine regiment'Speaking to the 500 soldiers, the Prince said: Charles added: 'The colours I have just presented continue to represent the heritage, fighting spirit and soul of this fine regiment'

He also said he was aware the regiment faced 'real challenges' and 'sadness' at the planned loss of its 3rd battalion, when its soldiers return from a tour of Afghanistan in 2014.

The battalion is being cut as part of a shake-up of the Army, previously announced by the Ministry of Defence. He added: 'I wish you all every possible success and good fortune for the future.'

Before the parade Charles met officers from the regiment, but also had time to have his photograph taken with Second World War veteran 93-year-old Brigadier Michael Dauncey, a glider pilot on the ill-fated Operation Market Garden attack on Nazi-occupied Europe in September 1944.

He piloted his glider to Arnhem where British troops were aiming to capture a bridge, and despite being blinded in one eye fought on and was later decorated for his bravery.
  1. 2013/06/07(金) 18:34:49|
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