The following article tells of the visit of Her Majesty The Queen and HRH The Duke of Edinburgh to the St Margaret of Scotland Hospice on 4 July 2012...
Following months of intense planning, discreet meetings and an incredible amount of hard work, the Chief Executive and Board of Directors were delighted HM The Queen and HRH The Duke of Edinburgh visited the Hospice on Wednesday 4 July 2012 on the special occasion of HM The Queen’s Diamond Jubilee.
St Margaret’s, which is Scotland’s largest and oldest Hospice, celebrated its own Diamond Jubilee in 2010 and it was a pleasure for the Hospice to welcome HM The Queen back having visited here in 1986.
It was a most beautiful day with everyone having a great time and enjoying themselves. Over 1000 people were invited to the Hospice to welcome Her Majesty and The Duke of Edinburgh. No-one could believe they would have the opportunity to be so close to Her Majesty and The Duke of Edinburgh. The Royal Couple were so relaxed and at ease, speaking to lots of different people.
In addition to presenting the Board of Directors and Hospice supporters to Her Majesty, Sister Rita introduced Monsignor McShane who had met her the last time she was here. They had a bit of banter in that they were both a bit older this time round. She enjoyed meeting him again and made this very obvious. He was delighted of course.
When Her Majesty visited in 1986, the Hospice was a single storey building. A display of the Hospice History and developments since the last visit, including the completion of the second floor, the new Education Centre, the Mary Aikenhead entrance and the Hydrotherapy Pool. The display also included photographs from the visit of Princess Anne in 1998.
Her Majesty was very interested in the display and the people who supported the Hospice.
The patients and visitors were delighted with the visit and all the supporters think it was day which will never be forgotten.
There was a very large marquee in the Hospice grounds which was filled with hot and cold food, drinks and desserts for the 1000 people in the Hospice grounds. The celebrations continued well into the late afternoon. The Salvation Army Band played music, together with a Jazz band and Pipe Band. The Staff were wonderful and kept everyone entertained. In the evening, the staff were invited to attend a Ceilidh in the Marquee. This gave everyone the opportunity to relax and enjoy themselves.
We have received some wonderful letters from people saying how much they loved the day and the whole atmosphere surrounding the visit.
Her Majesty’s graciousness and wonderful interest in everything is truly astounding. HRH The Duke of Edinburgh - what can we say about him? He was amazing and loved by all who had the opportunity of meeting him, he was just lovely with everyone.
The Duke of Edinburgh delighted those in the Education Centre who had the great privilege of meeting him, and displayed his spontaneous side when he went to Her Majesty’s bouquet taking a flower and giving it to a lady with a zimmer frame.
What a truly memorable and special day, one which will never be forgotten by all those attending.