Dame Vera Lynn would be ‘terribly upset’ over Queen’s death, says her daughter

The daughter of Dame Vera Lynn says her mother would have been “terribly upset” about news of the Queen’s death, having known her since the late monarch’s 16th birthday.

Virginia Lewis-Jones shared a tribute on behalf of her late mother, who died in 2020, in which she praised the Queen’s “wonderful sense of humour” and constant “twinkle in her eye”.

It comes as the monarch was fondly remembered as representing “all that was kind and fair” as more famous faces from around the world paid tribute to her reign and legacy.

Dame Joanna Lumley, Sir Rod Stewart and Dame Joan Collins were among the British stars reflecting on their encounters with the Queen as a period of mourning begins and the nation grieves for the figurehead.

Theatre – Royal Variety Performance – Palladium, London
The daughter of Dame Vera Lynn says her mother would have been ‘terribly upset’ about news of the Queen’s death, having known her since the monarch’s 16th birthday (PA)

In a statement shared with the PA news agency, Ms Lewis-Jones, recalled her mother’s experiences with the monarch and their shared dedication to charitable work.

“I know that my Mother would have been terribly upset at Her Majesty’s passing,” the statement read.

“They had known each other since my Mother was asked to sing at Princess Elizabeth’s 16th Birthday party at Windsor.

“She felt such a close affinity with the Queen, not only because of their shared dedication to so many charities, but also of course because of their major contributions during World War 2.

“The Queen as has been mentioned, had a wonderful sense of humour, and there was always a twinkle in her eye.”

Ms Lewis-Jones also recalled the Queen’s recent reference to her mother’s war-time anthem We’ll Meet Again, which she made during a national address during the coronavirus crisis.

“Obviously I and my family are very upset as are so many people in this country and around the world at Her Majesty’s passing,” she said.

“Not least because it has brought back my own Mother’s passing two years ago, as I am sure it has for so many other people who have lost loved ones, and therefore I am sure we are all doubly upset.

“However, I know that my Mother would probably say that very well known expression of hers ‘We’ll meet again,’ to which her Majesty made reference in her Covid speech to the nation.

“We WILL meet again. I know that they actually believe that too.”

Dame Joanna remembered the Queen saying she represented “all that was kind and fair, brave and good-hearted, noble and entirely admirable”.

In a statement to the PA news agency, the actress added: “We shall miss her with all our hearts and wish her safe travelling on her final great journey.

“She was adored and respected; and as we send our loving sympathies to all the members of the royal family, we count ourselves lucky to have lived during her long and fabulous reign. God bless her: and long live our great new King.”

Sir Rod revealed it had been a “devastating 48 hours” for him as his brother Don had died aged 94 on Tuesday before the death of the Queen was announced yesterday.

He recalled how the Queen had been “an unwavering presence” throughout his life and “a great unifier” as he paid tribute on Instagram.

The singer, who performed at the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee concert in June, added: “A shining star that will never fade in our hearts and souls.

“What a privilege it was to perform for her. My deepest sympathies to the Royal Family. God save the King.”

British rock band Queen issued a statement on behalf of guitarist Brian May and drummer Roger Taylor to Twitter which read: “We send our deepest condolences to the Queen’s family at this very sad time.”

The pair had performed for the monarch on a number of occasions including opening the Platinum Jubilee concert alongside Adam Lambert earlier this year.

May also created a classic moment 20 years ago, during the 2002 Golden Jubilee celebrations, when he performed God Save The Queen on Buckingham Palace’s roof.

Veteran actor Dick Van Dyke shared a black and white image of him shaking hands with the Queen on Twitter, simply captioning the post: “Rest well, Your Majesty”.

Dame Joan revealed she “fell under the spell” of the Queen the first out of the many times she met her.

The Hollywood star, who was made a Dame in 2015, added “my admiration has remained undimmed throughout the years”, as she shared a photo of her alongside the Queen during their younger years.

Ed Sheeran, who performed an emotional rendition of his hit song Perfect to close the Platinum Jubilee Pageant, which was chosen as a tribute to the late monarch and her late husband, the Duke of Edinburgh, also paid tribute.

The pop superstar posted a black and white photo of the Queen and wrote: “Thank you ma’am x”

In a short tribute posted on Twitter, the former Police frontman Sting, who was made a CBE in 2003, wrote: “I had a quiet weep for the Queen, I am sad for my country and what it has lost.”

Sir Mick Jagger reflected on how the Queen had “always been there” throughout his life as he recalled watching key moments.

He said: “I remember her as a beautiful young lady, to the much-beloved grandmother of the nation. My deepest sympathies are with the royal family.”

Sir Elton John described the Queen as an “inspiring presence” and paid tribute to her onstage during a concert in Toronto on Thursday evening.

Dame Helen Mirren, who portrayed the Queen on the silver screen and on the stage, described the monarch as the “epitome of nobility”.

In a post on Instagram, the Oscar-winning British actress said: “I am proud to be an Elizabethan. We mourn a woman, who, with or without the crown, was the epitome of nobility.”

James Bond star Daniel Craig said the Queen leaves “an incomparable legacy and will be profoundly missed”.

In a statement to the PA news agency, he added: “I, like so many, was deeply saddened by the news today and my thoughts are with the royal family, those she loved and all those who loved her.”

The monarch famously appeared alongside the 007 actor during the opening ceremony for the London Olympics.

Bond producers Barbara Broccoli and Michael G Wilson also shared a joint statement on Twitter saying: “We join the world in mourning the passing of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II.

“We send our heartfelt condolences to her family.”

Other British celebrities paying respects included Ant and Dec, Stephen Fry, Ozzy Osbourne, Sue Perkins, Sir Philip Pullman, and Victoria and David Beckham.

The news was also the subject of several US talk show monologues including The Daily Show, hosted by Trevor Noah, and The Late Late Show with James Corden.

As well as celebrities, British arts and entertainment institutions including Bafta, The National Gallery, The National Theatre and the BBC issued statements paying respects.

The BBC Board issued a statement from director-general Tim Davie in which he reflected on the Queen’s role as a “unifying figure across generations” and said the broadcaster had been honoured to “record and share” moments of her life.

“Her Majesty was the absolute embodiment of public service. She was a unifying figure across generations, communities and borders, who represented the very best of our nation,” the statement read.

“She will always be remembered with the greatest affection and admiration.”

The national anthem was played on BBC One following the announcement, showing a photograph of the Queen, followed by a royal crest on a black background and the words Queen Elizabeth II.

It was also played at the Venice International Film Festival, though screenings continued as normal.

The National Theatre said it was “deeply saddened” by the news of the death of the monarch, who had been a patron of the institution for more than 40 years.