Paul McCartney Praises Queen's 'Fabulous Sense Of Humour' As He Reflects On Many Times They Met

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Sir Paul McCartney and Queen Elizabeth II pictured in 2012 after her Jubilee concert (Photo: via Associated Press)
Sir Paul McCartney and Queen Elizabeth II pictured in 2012 after her Jubilee concert (Photo: via Associated Press)

Sir Paul McCartney and Queen Elizabeth II pictured in 2012 after her Jubilee concert (Photo: via Associated Press)

Sir Paul McCartney has reflected on the many occasions he met with the Queen over the decades, praising her “fabulous sense of humour” and “great dignity”.

In a poignant post on his website, Sir Paul wrote that after hearing the news of Queen Elizabeth II’s death earlier this week, his “memories came flooding back, and I would like to share these with you”.

The 80-year-old music legend explained: “I feel privileged to have been alive during the whole of Queen Elizabeth II’s reign. When I was 10 years old I entered an essay competition in Liverpool and won my division for my essay about the British Monarchy so I have been a fan for a long time.

“In 1953 when the Queen was crowned everyone on our street in Speke, Liverpool finally got a television set and we settled down to watch the Coronation in glorious black and white.”

Sir Paul wrote that his first royal occasion was when The Beatles received their MBEs in October 1965, 12 years into her reign.

Recalling that the band were all “taken aside and shown what the correct protocol was”, the singer wrote: “For four Liverpool lads, it was, ‘Wow, hey man’.

Following this, they met a second time in 1982 at a benefit at the Royal Albert Hall, where Sir Paul was joined by his late wife Linda McCartney.

“Part of the evening included some orchestral re-workings of some Beatles songs and I remember chatting with Her Majesty about them,” he said.

“She also re-introduced me to Prince Philip who said he remembered our previous meeting in the 60s!”

Their third interaction came in 1996, when the Queen opened the Liverpool Institute for Performing Arts, with Sir Paul then receiving his Knighthood a year later.

The Queen with Sir Paul at the opening of LIPA in 1996 (Photo: Pool/Tim Graham Picture Library via Getty Images)
The Queen with Sir Paul at the opening of LIPA in 1996 (Photo: Pool/Tim Graham Picture Library via Getty Images)

The Queen with Sir Paul at the opening of LIPA in 1996 (Photo: Pool/Tim Graham Picture Library via Getty Images)

Reminiscing about the day, the former Beatles star said: “Our next encounter was a very proud day for me. It was one of the best days ever.

“I felt very honoured to be offered a Knighthood and, of course, it would have been rude to turn it down! I remember it was in the springtime and the skies were blue. It was a wonderful day and I remember thinking I’d come a long way from a little terrace house in Liverpool!”

Sharing one of his funnier exchanges with the late monarch, he continued: “It was a new millennium the next time we were together again and what an occasion it was!

“Celebrating her Golden Jubilee, we got to rock out in her garden. As Her Majesty was on stage receiving applause at the end of the show I joked, ‘Well I suppose this will be happening next year then?’ to which she replied, ‘Not in my garden it won’t!’.”

The Queen meets musicians Sir Elton John, Sir Cliff Richard, Dame Shirley Bassey, Sir Tom Jones and Sir Paul McCartney in 2012 (Photo: Anwar Hussein via Getty Images)
The Queen meets musicians Sir Elton John, Sir Cliff Richard, Dame Shirley Bassey, Sir Tom Jones and Sir Paul McCartney in 2012 (Photo: Anwar Hussein via Getty Images)

The Queen meets musicians Sir Elton John, Sir Cliff Richard, Dame Shirley Bassey, Sir Tom Jones and Sir Paul McCartney in 2012 (Photo: Anwar Hussein via Getty Images)

After they crossed paths several more times, Sir Paul wrote that their final meeting fell in 2018, when he was awarded the Companion of Honour medal.

He said: “Because of my respect and love for the Queen and her fabulous sense of humour when I was given the Companion of Honour medal I shook her hand, leaned in and said, ‘We have got to stop meeting like this,’ to which she giggled slightly and got on with the ceremony.

“I did wonder if I was a bit too cheeky after saying this, after all this was The Queen, but I have a feeling she didn’t mind.”

“God bless you. You will be missed,” he concluded.

Following the announcement of Queen Elizabeth II’s death on Thursday evening, tributes immediately began pouring in from world leaders and key figures from the world of British entertainment.

Among those to have since paid their respect include David and Victoria Beckham, Dame Helen Mirren, who famously won an Oscar for her performance in the film The Queen, and Sir David Attenborough.

The Queen’s eldest son Charles, who became King upon the death of his mother, also said during a national address on Friday: “To my darling Mama, as you begin your last great journey to join my dear late Papa, I want simply to say this: thank you.

“Thank you for your love and devotion to our family and to the family of nations you have served so diligently all these years. May ‘flights of Angels sing thee to thy rest’.”

This article originally appeared on HuffPost UK and has been updated.

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