Thursday, May 26, 2011

Mary turns 80 today

May 26, 1947


Londoners cheered and waved today as Queen Mary was driven to and from Buckingham Palace, where she joined thirty-one members of the Royal Family for a luncheon to celebrate her 80th birthday.

One of the guests at the luncheon was Lt. Philip Mountbatten.  It now seems only a matter of time before his engagement to Princess Elizabeth is announced.

The Duke of Windsor was not present, nor "were the recently bereaved Princess Royal and her son the new Earl of Harewood."  The Duke of Windsor did telephone his mother this morning at Marlborough House, her London home. 

Queen Mary received telegrams and messages of congratulations throughout the day.   As she drove Buckingham Palace,  she acknowledged the cheering crowds, and "smiled her acknowledgement."  She wore a turquoise dress and a "familiar toque of the same color."

King George VI and Queen Elizabeth and their two daughters, Princess Elizabeth and Princess Margaret, arrived earlier this morning from Windsor.  The Duchess of Kent arrived with her three young children, Edward, Alexandra and Michael, and they were followed by Viscount and Viscountess Mountbatten and the Duke of Gloucester.

Crowds continued to grow outside the palace long after Queen Mary had gone in.  They sang "Happy Birthday," and some began to chant "We want Queen Mary. 

Eventually, the doors to the palace's balcony opened, and Queen Mary stepped out, and "waved to the cheering, clapping and singing Londoners."
The King and Queen, the two princesses, the Duke and Duchess of Gloucester, Prince William of Gloucester and Princess Alexandra of Kent, joined the queen on the balcony.

Some in the crowd shouted  "God Bless you, God Bless you!." 

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