Two churchwardens from St Mary’s in Ilkeston enjoyed an evening mingling with royalty at Buckingham Palace as a thank you for the church’s Jubilee fundraising efforts.
Mary Hawkins and Peter Hodson were invited to a grand reception recognising the church’s contribution towards the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee Trust, which supports projects to enrich the lives of people across the Commonwealth.
St Mary’s had sold copies of the booklet Our Recollections of Royal Encounters, to which many members of the congregation contributed.
Mary and Peter received invitations for a regal encounter of their own alongside 200 other lucky guests.
After a drinks reception and a tour of some of the grandest rooms in the palace, the pair were officially presented to the Queen and the Duke of Edinburgh.
They even went on to meet an assortment of other Royals, including Princess Alexandra and Prince Edward, the Duke of Gloucester.
“They all worked their way through the assembled guests, chatting informally as they went,” said Peter. “It was a splendid and memorable occasion and a great privilege to have been invited. Our journey back home was enriched by what we had seen and heard during a lovely evening.”