Derby - Maundy Thursday
w/e 04 April 2010 All this week's pictures were taken
with a Kodak DX6490
Here's something you don't see very often, the Royal Standard
flying from the top of Derby Cathedral to signify the presence
of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II.
I had joined hundreds of other people on Maundy Thursday, April
2nd 2010, to welcome the Queen to Derby where she was to distribute
Maundy money to 84 men and 84 women in a ceremony that dates
back 800 years and symbolises Jesus washing His disciples' feet.
Some of the assembled crowd obviously had better vantage points
than the majority and at this point it was still not clear whether
I would be able to get any reasonable photos. One thing I noticed
here though, since our last visit for the Heritage Walk, was
that the Cathedral Centre had been treated to a fresh coat of
paint and the previous maroon colour had been replaced by royal
A murmur went round the crowd as the Bishop of Derby, Dr Alastair
Redfern and the Acting Dean, Canon Elaine Jones came out of the
Cathedral and a line of official looking cars approached with
With people gently jostling for position it was a case of holding
the camera at arms length as high as possible and pressing the
button and it wasn't until I checked the results that I got a
first glimpse of the Queen. For a while I thought that was going
to be the best I could get but the Queen quickly entered the
Cathedral and the crowd started to thin allowing me to edge closer
to the front.
The service took about an hour during which time the 168 recipients
of the Maundy money received their gifts from the Queen. In other
ceremonial duties the recipient of any award approaches the monarch
but in the Maundy service, although stopping short of washing
their feet, the Queen actually approached each of the 168, one
man and one woman for each year of the Queen's age. During the
service the barriers outside were repositioned closer to the
entrance and the crowd allowed to move forward and as the time
approached for the Queen to leave, the Yeomen of the Guard, or
Beefeaters as they are commonly known, positioned themselves
outside the entrance.
The police who must be complimented on their handling of the
whole occasion asked for any children with flowers for the Queen
to come forward and they were positioned inside the barriers
to present their various posies, bunches and bouquets of flowers.
Amateur photographers like myself and professionals too had to
contend with TV crews in order to get the shot they wanted and
it was difficult to jostle for position jammed in among the crowd,
but the Queen had a smile for everyone as she greeted and spoke
to people close to the front of the barriers.
But eventually patience paid off and I was able to capture this
image not only of Her Majesty in her duck-egg blue outfit with
a matching hat rimmed in black and a diamond brooch on her shoulder
but also the Duke of Edinburgh who seemed really at ease as he
chatted with the children. The wait had been well worthwhile
and from here the Royal party headed for lunch and then off for
the Queen to unveil a plaque and officially open the new Royal
The following day there was the annual Christian Witness through
Ilkestom which consisted of a silent procession with dramatic
scenes titled "Crime Scene?"