Europe

Keen royal fans brave rain and hail in tents ahead of Jubilee weekend – ‘To show respect’

Royal family on the balcony after Trooping the Colour (2019)

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Fans have camped out two days before the once in a lifetime event kicks off on Thursday with the Trooping the Colour parade. The tents have been pitched alongside a security fence that has been erected for the occasion around Buckingham Palace.

Two enthusiastic royal supporters, John Loughrey and Maria Scott have been in the front row for several major royal events and are at the Mall once again.

Mr Loughrey’s love of everything royal led to him resigning from his job in order to attend all court dates for the inquest in 2008 into the death of the Princess of Wales.

The 67-year-old attends Westminster Abbey on a weekly basis to pray for Princess Diana and was also at the hospital for all of the births of the Cambridge children.

Speaking to the Mirror, Mr Loughrey said: “Prince William was in the Palace with his kids and he came out and spoke to us, saying this is an unofficial visit and I am touched by what you are doing for my mother.

“I said I always pray for your mother and I will light a candle in Westminster Abbey.”

Speaking about the Queen who he has met on two occasions, he said: “She goes out of her way to meet people.

“I said to Her Majesty, ‘we are very proud of you and you are always in our hearts’.

“She has seen so much history. She has had a long life, always been there for the Commonwealth and done her duty.”

Another avid fan camped at the Mall is Donna Werner, 70, who flew into the capital from Connecticut for the Jubilee to celebrate with her British friend Mary-Jane Willows, 69 from Cornwall.

Ms Werner said: “It’s to show the Queen some love and respect for all she has done.

“I think that after 70 years of working in one job she should be honoured.

“She has done a wonderful job.”

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Other international fans include Pat Hart, 46, and his wife Angie, 51, and their two daughters who arrived on Saturday from Canada.

The family have been camped since Tuesday night in preparation for the Trooping of the Colour on Thursday.

Mrs Hart told Express and Star: “We had some lovely British hail, and wind and rain but it’s worth it.

“By the end of it it’s always worth it and I think the harder it is maybe the more rewarding it is.”

She jokingly added: “I’ll keep telling myself that anyway.”

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