"I am extremely lucky to have met her": Dorchester man on meeting the Queen

·2-min read
Mr Richard Crail recalls the times he met Queen Elizabeth II. Picture: McCarthy Stone
Mr Richard Crail recalls the times he met Queen Elizabeth II. Picture: McCarthy Stone

AS THE Queen’s Platinum Jubilee approaches, one Dorchester retiree has been reminiscing of the times he had the pleasure of meeting the 'remarkable woman' - not once, but twice.

Richard Crail, who lives at McCarthy Stone’s Casterbridge Court development with his wife Margaret, 82, has recounted his life and career in health care, where he worked his way up the ranks to become Chief Executive at King's College Hospital in London.

It was here Mr Crail was able to spend an afternoon with Queen Elizabeth II.

Read more: Care homes prepare for Queen's Jubilee events across Dorset

Mr Crail recalls: “My years of working took me to many interesting and inspiring places, but nowhere more special than, not only one, but two meetings with the Queen herself.

“The chairman at Kings College Hospital at the time was very influential and used to arrange for many special guests to visit the hospital, but when he mentioned the Queen was stopping by, I couldn’t quite believe it – I just had to meet her.

“I remember it clear as day, the chairman had to leave briefly, so for some time it was just the Queen and I, and her staff, of course. I asked if she wanted to take a tour of the children’s ward, and she took me up on the offer.

“At one point I told her we needed to go up in the lift, to which she replied, ‘I hope it does not do the same as it did when my father was here’ and laughed. I asked, ‘what happened Ma’am?’ and she said, ‘the lift broke down!’

“We laughed together, and I realised just how easy she was to talk to – just like you or me.

“She was so lovely, very gracious, and easy to chat to you. I met her again a few years later at Buckingham Palace’s Garden Party, and she hadn’t changed a bit. I am extremely lucky to have met such a wonderful remarkable woman, not just once, but twice. I feel really grateful.”

Read more: Firework display to spark Weymouth's Platinum Jubilee celebrations into life

Mr and Mrs Crail are now looking forward to celebrating the Queen’s Jubilee with fellow homeowners at Casterbridge Court, where the team is inviting local retirees to join them in their celebrations.

Retirees, their friends and families are welcomed to the development on Thursday, May 26 from 11am-1pm for a traditional British refreshments and live music from Scarlett Swing who will play in the gardens.

Our goal is to create a safe and engaging place for users to connect over interests and passions. In order to improve our community experience, we are temporarily suspending article commenting