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Memories of the Queen

Memories of the Queen

Diamond Jubilee Visit 2012

As part of the Diamond Jubilee Celebrations, our late Queen and Prince Philip visited Glanusk for a countryside fair, ‘Diamonds in the Park’, hosted by the Hon Dame Shan Legge Bourke, who was Lord Lieutenant of Powys at that time. Having spent days of preparation, making sure everything was absolutely perfect, I had been invited to exhibit in the Wool display which also included working animals and sheep dog demonstrations and of course, Jim the Ferret. This infamous character brought with him his cluster of smelly and energetic ferrets

Silver Diamond Visit to Glanusk Park, Brecon and Radnor Newspaper

As the day approached so did the rain, in biblical quantities, however this did not dampen the enthusiasm of the public or the exhibitors, who huddled under gazebos or umbrellas, eagerly awaiting the arrival of Her Majesty. As often happens she was delayed, and as we waited I had a chance to talk to some of the other exhibitors, including Jim the Ferret. He was absolutely convinced that the Queen would be making a beeline for him and his ferrets and demonstrated to me, how he could present his animals, without any of them giving her a quick nip or inflicting their pungent smell, ‘You see, you ‘old ’em like this’ he said, grasping one of the ferrets by the neck and lifting it from its cage. The animal fell into a strange, torpid state and dangled from his hand as if it was dead. ‘Dead is it???’ I asked. ‘No’ he replied, ‘they like it like that, you can carry ’em for a long time’. And that is exactly what he did, as it was at least an hour before the Queen finally appeared and there, quietly waiting was Jim the Ferret, with his two ferrets dangling from either hand like empty milk bottles. Slowly the immaculate black limo eased its way towards us, through the parting crowds, and the pouring Powys rain. My heart was in my mouth, perhaps Jim the Ferret was right. There was a moment of hesitation, a pause that felt like an hour, would she or would she not alight in front of us? The door of the Royal car was opened and under the canopy of a large umbrella, the Queen stepped out, immaculately dressed in silvery-blue, hatted, gloved and jewelled, and wearing a perfect pair of black patent leather shoes in the Welsh mud. At this precise moment, the thronging crowds converged, almost unable to contain their excitement and completely blocked the route to Jim the Ferret. As soon as the Royal entourage had passed, I saw Jim the Ferret, standing, alone, shell-shocked and stationary, still clutching his two beloved ferrets. He was not to have his day after all

The Queen shone like a pale moonstone, gliding across the muddy fields, whereas the rest of us waded through the puddles in the pouring rain. This memory has stayed with me. Christ may walk on water but our Queen could walk on mud and reign through it too

Athene English





Athene English

We make and source beautiful things from natural materials

We are specialists in hand made Leather goods including studded Dog Collars and wallets from 200 year old Russian Reindeer Leather; offering for sale a range of ethical tailored Clothing and wool knitwear and a collection of useful but beautiful Homeware made from HornLeatherWool: old and new Welsh blankets and textiles; Slate and Wood . As well as an eclectic selection of one-off collectibles in our Originals section

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