Shropshire Star

Flags wave and cheers go up as crowds welcome Queen Consort to Telford

Crowds of excited local people gathered in Telford to welcome the Queen Consort to town.

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Camilla, Queen Consort, visits Southwater in Telford

As Camilla met the flag-waving crowds in Southwater on Tuesday she was given cheers to welcome her to the borough and bouquets from wellwishers.

Seven year old Matilda Rigby, aged seven, from Brookside, managed to hand her posy to the Queen Consort as she was lifted shoulder high above the crowds.

Mum Lauren, 35, said: "Tilda was delighted the Queen Consort took the flowers. She was distraught when Queen Elizabeth died and her school agreed that she could have the time off to come and see her.

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"She has a miniature puppy called Windsor and dolls that she has named Charlotte and Louie and she is very keen on the royals and wants to know the history of it."

Lauren's mum, Lyn Maskell, 64, also from Brookside, said: "It's the first time I have seen a member of the Royal Family and it was lovely to see Tilda handing over the posy."

Also excitedly waving their flags were Debbie O'Kelly and her daughter, Dulcie, who were in the crowd outside Cineword as the Queen Consort went into the Southwater One library building.

Debbie and Dulcie O'Kelley

Dulcie, who is undergoing treatment for an aggressive form of neuroblastoma, had sent her condolences to the King following the death of his mother the late Queen Elizabeth II in the form of a picture.

Dulcie sent her condolences to the King following the death of his mother Queen Elizabeth

Teacher Mark Wright and other members of staff at Hollinswood Primary School took 350 children to watch a bit of history unfolding.

"They are really curious to know what the Queen Consort looks like and what she does," said Mr Wright.

"We have told them who she is as a part of our lessons on British values and her place in the Royal Family.

"I have been a teacher for 25 years and this is the first time for me to see a member of the Royal Family."

Crowds gathered in Southwater

For many in the crowd it was a family affair, including Barbara Anderson, 71, her husband Stuart, 73, from Albrighton, and their daughter Gemma, 41, from Hollinswood.

Gemma has two sons at Hollinswood Primary School, Cairo Smith, aged 11, and Leyton Smith, 7.

She said: "We've just come to watch with the school. We had been planning to come for the visit that was postponed a few weeks ago. We are pleased to see her and what she looks like."

Barbara and Stuart have seen royalty twice, when Queen Elizabeth visited RAF Cosford in 2012 and when they made a special trip to Braemar in Scotland for the Highland Games.

Coffee shop manager Chloe Bythell, 26, and her right hand woman Samantha Yeboah, 30, took time out of running the Place in the Park nearby to soak up the atmosphere. They were joined by royalist Elaine Jenkins, 69, who donated her flag to little Ashanti Yeboah, aged two.

"We came to keep an eye on the kids, feel the vibe and join in the atmosphere," said Samantha.

"I met the late Queen in Ironbridge when she visited and was lifted over the barriers to hand her some flowers. My picture was on the front of the Shropshire Star!"

Terri Green, 68, from Wellington, said: "I wanted to meet her and see her. If I had the chance to ask her a question I would ask her what it is like to be the future Queen of England."

She was not the only one in the crowd who would like to see the "consort" dropped from the title of Queen Consort.

"I think we should just call her the Queen," she said.

Little Malia Beddows, aged just 10 months, was there with her mum Olivia Parton, 24, from Woodside, and busily chewing her little plastic flag.

Olivia said: "I had just come out to do some shopping and missed that she was coming so we joined the crowd to see her. I thought we would come along and say hello. I think she should be called just Queen, rather than Queen Consort."

Libby Summers from the Mencap charity was there with six clients and five members of staff from their venue at the Meeting Point.

"The Royal Family are supporters of Mencap so we thought we would come along and give the Queen Consort some support in return," said Libby.

"We help our clients get into work so we came along also to see how the police and security guards work, and to see volunteers getting awards."