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Cambridgeshire pays tribute to Queen Elizabeth II





Tributes from across the Cambridgeshire region have been paid following the death of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II today (Thursday).

Her Majesty The Queen vist to The National Heritage Centre for Horseracing and Sporting Art in Newmarket...Her Majesty leaves after her vist..Pictures Mark Westley. (59184061)
Her Majesty The Queen vist to The National Heritage Centre for Horseracing and Sporting Art in Newmarket...Her Majesty leaves after her vist..Pictures Mark Westley. (59184061)

The Queen, the UK’s longest-serving monarch, died at Balmoral in Scotland aged 96, after reigning for 70 years.

She became a much loved and respected figure across the globe and was known for her sense of duty and her devotion to a life of service.

The flag is flying at half-mast over the Guildhall and Old Shire Hall as Cambridge mourns the sad news of the death of Her Majesty the Queen.

A letter of condolence from the Lord Lieutenant of Cambridgeshire Julie Spence has been issued.

It reads: “Cambridgeshire and Peterborough is not alone in mourning the news of the death of HM The Queen – as this is a sadness we share with the whole country and indeed the Commonwealth.

“As the longest reigning monarch of modern times, she is the only sovereign most of the people of this country have ever known, and news of her death has touched and saddened us all.

“Our particular love and affection has been deepened and strengthened by the links she has to our area and the frequent visits she has made to this county, since making her first official visit as monarch to the City of Cambridge in October 1955.

“Her Majesty was the patron of more than 600 charities and organisations, many with local links, this included a number of Cambridge University colleges such as Queen’s College, Gonville and Caius, Trinity and Pembroke. Less well known – but no less important - was her patronage of the Peterborough Royal Foxhound Show Society. All those organisations who have benefitted from this association will feel her loss.

The Queen visits Royal Papworth Hospital. Picture Keith Heppell. (59184936)
The Queen visits Royal Papworth Hospital. Picture Keith Heppell. (59184936)

“Her most recent visit to our area was to formally open the new Royal Papworth Hospital in 2019, granting to it the Royal honorific and I was privileged to be able to welcome her on that day. The crowds of local people who turned out to welcome her then, mourn her today.

“We realise our sadness can be as nothing to those of her family, in particular our new Sovereign His Royal Highness King Charles III and the Queen Consort and the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge, Prince George, Princess Charlotte and Prince Louis who have lost a beloved mother, grandmother and great-grandmother.

“Our thoughts and prayers are with them.”

Mayor of Cambridge, Cllr Mark Ashton said: “The news of the death of Her Majesty The Queen is a matter of deep regret and sorrow for the people of Cambridge and for the nation as a whole.

“We join people around the country and the world, in mourning Her Majesty’s passing and remembering with deep affection her remarkable reign and legacy.

“On behalf of the residents of Cambridge, I extend our city’s heartfelt condolences to the members of the Royal Family.”

A book of condolence opened at The Guildhall today (Friday).

Cllr Anna Smith, leader of Cambridge City Council, added: “I am very saddened to hear of the death of her Majesty, Queen Elizabeth II. As the longest serving monarch of this country, she has been an enduring presence in our lives for over 70 years. Her ethos of public service has been exceptional, and is a model for all of us who seek to serve our communities. I want to extend my deepest condolences, and those of the City Council, to her friend and family, and all of those whose lives she touched.”

Daniel Zeichner, the Labour MP for Cambridge, said The Queen “has always been there in our lives”. He said: “She has been a constant fixture exemplifying the values of service and dignity. So many people will remember her visits to our great city and mourn her passing. This is the end of an era.”

Cllr Anna Bradnam, chair of South Cambridgeshire District Council, said the flag at council offices will be flown at half-mast until the proclamation of the new Sovereign, when it will be raised to full mast.

She added: “A Book of Condolence will be open at 7.30am tomorrow (Friday) at South Cambridgeshire Hall on Cambourne Business Park. Flowers and tributes may be laid in the area in front of South Cambridgeshire Hall.

Anthony Browne, the Conservative MP for South Cambridgeshire, said: “Words cannot express the sorrow at the passing of Britain’s longest-ever serving monarch, Her Majesty, Queen Elizabeth II at Balmoral today.

“I know many in South Cambridgeshire and across the country will be struggling with this heart-breaking news, as am I. As Queen, she has been part of almost all our lives since we were born. We have been cheered, consoled, directed, and protected by her words through the years.

“A stateswoman without equal around the world, she steered Britain for over seventy years with decency, resolve, and a commitment to public service. Exemplifying the greatest traits of our nation, Her Majesty guided, advised and scrutinised every Prime Minister since Winston Churchill. There was not a day in her reign where she was not working for our nation. She appointed the new Prime Minister just days before she died.

The Queen visits Royal Papworth Hospital. Picture Keith Heppell. (59184935)
The Queen visits Royal Papworth Hospital. Picture Keith Heppell. (59184935)

“I want to pass on my deepest condolences to the Royal Family, the court, and everyone who had the privilege of knowing, meeting, or working with our sovereign. The world will be a different, and worse, place without Her Majesty in it. Everyone in the British Isles, the Commonwealth, and around the world will mourn her loss.”

South East Cambridgeshire Conservative MP Lucy Frazer said: “I am deeply saddened by the death of Her Majesty the Queen. She dedicated her life to public service and fulfilled her role with dignity and grace. She was an inspiration to many across the globe. My thoughts are with King Charles III and all the Royal Family.”

In Cambourne, floral tributes can be placed at the green space on the junction of Jeavons Lane and Eastgate and a book of condolence will be located on the town council offices.

Councillor Joe O’Dwyer, chair of Cambourne Town Council which will postpone all events and meetings until after the funeral, said: “It is with the greatest sadness that this evening we have learnt of the passing of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II.

“Having served our Nation with the utmost loyalty and dedication for 70 years, I hope that we as a town can come together during this period of mourning to reflect and remember our Monarch for all that she did, her unrelenting service and inspirational devotion to duty.

“On behalf of the people of Cambourne, I offer my sincere condolences to the Royal family and to every person grieving locally, nationally and beyond at the loss of, for many of us, the only British Monarch we have known in our lifetime.

“May this time of sorrow around the world be an opportunity for us to demonstrate locally our great sense of community, to support each other as we mourn the loss of our Queen.

“Please know that through your time of deep sorrow, I, along with our families, friends and neighbours share your grief and that together we will look ahead to brighter days, which is what Her Majesty would want us to do.”

The Queen’s extraordinary life and achievements were celebrated, and tributes paid to her by the British Hindus of Cambridgeshire. This was done at Cambourne Village College in Cambridge on Saturday, September 10 during the annual Ganesh Chaturthi event organised along with Cambridge Mitra Mandal (CMM). The Hindu Community turned up with their families and offered their Shraddhanjali (prayers).

All Cambridgeshire Libraries will open books of condolence during the course of tomorrow, which will be available for residents to sign, and an online book is also available now.

In line with national protocols, the official proclamation of the new sovereign was read out by the High Sheriff Jennifer Crompton with the Lord-Lieutenant Julie Spence at the Guildhall in Cambridge on Sunday, September 11 at 1pm.

Cambridgeshire will also take part in a two-minute silence planned at 11am on the day of the state funeral.

Queen at Ely Cathedral. (59200707)
Queen at Ely Cathedral. (59200707)

A thanksgiving service will also be held at Great St Mary’s Church in Cambridge, Ely Cathedral and Peterborough Cathedral. Details of this will be published later.

The chair of Cambridgeshire County Council, Cllr Stephen Ferguson is to send a letter of condolence on behalf of Cambridgeshire.

He said: “It is with deep regret that we received the news of the death of Her Majesty the Queen. It is difficult for me to convey the depth of our sympathy and feelings of loss at this time.

“The people of Cambridgeshire have a very deep affection for Her Majesty, and for the whole Royal Family who have visited the county often and with obvious pleasure, and of course we have particularly strong ties with her grandson and his wife on whom she bestowed the honour of being the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge.

“Like the rest of the country we will mourn her passing but also remember with affection and happiness her long reign. Our thoughts are with her family who are mourning not just the loss of a monarch, but the loss of a beloved mother, grandmother and great-grandmother.”

Cambridgeshire and Peterborough mayor Dr Nik Johnson said: “I have been deeply saddened to hear about the death of Her Majesty The Queen and join the nation in mourning her loss. My immediate thoughts are with her family and friends, and I join those across the country in remembering with the deep affection, the love and the commitment she has shown to all of us throughout her remarkable reign.”

A statement released on behalf of the Cambridgeshire and Peterborough Combined Authority said: “The Combined Authority is saddened to hear about the passing of Her Majesty, Queen Elizabeth II. We would like to offer our deepest condolences to the Royal Family and all those affected by the news.”

The University of Cambridge said its community is deeply saddened by the news of the death of Her Majesty The Queen.

A statement from the Vice-Chancellor, Professor Stephen J. Toope said: “This news brings great sorrow for the United Kingdom as a whole, for the Commonwealth, and most particularly for members of the Royal Family, for whom we extend our heartfelt condolences.

“Her Majesty The Queen’s reign defined the United Kingdom of the twentieth and early twenty-first centuries. Her Majesty’s devotion to public service and the common good, her dignity, her sense of duty and her strong moral compass, will always be an inspiration.”

Queen at Ely Cathedral. (59200708)
Queen at Ely Cathedral. (59200708)

Emeritus Vice-Chancellor Professor Sir Leszek Borysiewicz said: “I had the privilege of meeting Her Majesty The Queen on several occasions. When she opened buildings and attended major events in Cambridge, she always engaged warmly with our staff and students as well as showing a continued interest in the University.

“On each occasion it was an honour and pleasure to meet with her, particularly in the knowledge that she always valued Cambridge University’s contribution to the education and wellbeing of the United Kingdom and Commonwealth.”

The Queen was a welcome guest at Trinity Hall during her reign and she had a place in the governance of the college.

But it was as a personal visitor to Trinity Hall that Her Majesty made the greatest impression. The Queen and HRH the Duke of Edinburgh visited Trinity Hall in 2000 to mark the 650th year of the college’s foundation and reopened the Graham Storey Room after its refurbishment.

Vice-Master Dr Daniel Tyler, said “We mourn the loss of our sovereign, Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II. We are proud of her association with the college and, above all, we are grateful for her dedicated and gracious service to this nation.”

In 2011, The Queen and The Duke of Edinburgh visited St John’s to mark the college’s 500th birthday.

Heather Hancock DL LVO, Master of St John’s College, said the college flag would be flying at half-mast.

She said: “On behalf of the Fellows, students and staff of St John’s College, I extend our deepest sympathies to the Royal Family on the death of Her Majesty The Queen. The College flag is flying at half-mast as the nation enters a period of mourning.

“The Queen’s extraordinary reign was the longest in British history – she dedicated her life to the service of the people of the United Kingdom, the Realms and the Commonwealth. Her seven decades as Head of State had an immeasurable impact and will not be seen again in our lifetimes. She was a remarkable woman whose unparalleled sense of duty will never be forgotten.”

The first the Queen visited Jesus College was a private visit in 1984 while her son, The Earl of Wessex, Prince Edward was a first-year undergraduate reading history.

Her Majesty had opened the Grafton Shopping Centre in the morning and lunched at Emmanuel College to mark its quatercentenary. The Queen arrived at Jesus College, accompanied by His Royal Highness The Duke of Edinburgh, who was the Chancellor of the University of Cambridge at the time. The royal party were greeted by the then Master, Sir Alan Cottrell and his wife Lady Jean, Sir Peter Proby, then Lord Lieutenant of Cambridgeshire and Prince Edward.

The Queen in the Senate House. Picture: Cambridge Univesity. (59200422)
The Queen in the Senate House. Picture: Cambridge Univesity. (59200422)

Her Majesty returned to college 12 years later in 1996 when she opened the Quincentenary Library, once again accompanied by Prince Philip in his role as Chancellor of the University of Cambridge.

A statement from Christ’s College said: “At Christ’s we remember with pride and affection her visit in 2005 as part of our celebrations to mark 500 years since her great (x 16) grandmother, Lady Margaret Beaufort, founded our college. More than any other person in our lifetime, Her late Majesty embodied public service, duty and honour. We send our condolences to His Majesty The King and all the Royal Family.”

Her Majesty created Churchill College by putting her seal to its Charter in 1960.

“Churchill College wishes to express its sorrow on the news of the death of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II,” a statement said.

Clare College master Loretta Minghella said: “On behalf of the whole Clare community, I extend our deepest sympathies to The King and other members of the Royal Family at this time of immense personal loss.”

Downing College master Alan Bookbinder added: “On behalf of the Fellows, students and staff of Downing College, I would like to express our sadness at the death of our Patron, Queen Elizabeth II, and our appreciation of her 70 years of devoted service. For the period up to her funeral later in the month our flag is flying at half mast as a sign of respect and regret.”

The master of Fitzwilliam College, Baroness Morgan, said: “Her Majesty the Queen gave a lifetime of service. For 70 years, she was a constant, a marker of stability, of dignity in public office. For every one of us currently working and studying at Fitzwilliam, from our incoming Freshers to our Fellowship, we have known no other monarch.”

The Gonville and Caius College flag is flying at half mast. The master, professor Pippa Rogerson said: “The news of the death of Her Majesty the Queen brings great sadness for the nation. On behalf of the college community I offer our heartfelt condolences to the Royal Family and our gratitude for her long life of service.”

Magdalene College master Sir Christopher Greenwood said: “While no brief statement can do justice to the seven decades in which she has served the country as its Head of State, we shall all recall the dedication, dignity and good humour with which she fulfilled the pledge of service that she made more than seventy-five years ago.

“In particular, we remember the keen interest which Her Majesty always showed in education and the encouragement which she gave to this University, not least through the approval of two new Regius chairs.”

He added: “On behalf of the college, I offer our deepest sympathy to His Majesty King Charles III and all the members of the Royal Family. Long live the King.”

The Queen on a visit to St John’s in 2011 to mark the College’s 500th birthday. Picture credit: St John’s College (59184931)
The Queen on a visit to St John’s in 2011 to mark the College’s 500th birthday. Picture credit: St John’s College (59184931)

In 2019, The Queen had lunch with Fellows, staff and students at Queens’ College – of which, like The Queen Mother, she was Patroness.

Dr Mohamed El-Erian, the President, said: “Queens’ College was honoured to have Her Majesty as our Patroness. We will always remember with deep affection and great appreciation her visits to the College. On every occasion, she engaged our students, Fellows and staff in her uniquely interesting, elegant, and gracious manner.

“We are enormously grateful for all her wonderful contributions to Queens’, including how she inspired so many members of our community. She will be sorely missed.”

Selwyn College held a short service in the chapel on the day after the announcement of the Queen’s death, which was attended by fellows, students and staff.

The master Roger Mosey said: “The college, the nation and millions of people around the world are grieving for Queen Elizabeth II. In her long life, she provided a model of service and dedication; and, during times of disruption and change, she was a figure of stability as the only monarch most of us had known. The jubilee earlier this year showed the Queen’s ability to unite the people of these islands as we celebrated a reign whose length alone made it unique in our history – but which will also be distinguished by the monarch’s constitutional wisdom.”

On 8 March 1996, Her Majesty became the first reigning British monarch to visit Sidney Sussex College on the occasion of its quatercentenary. Together with Prince Philip, she was escorted by professor Gabriel Horn, the then master, on her tour of the college.

Following the news of her death, the master, professor Richard Penty said “Tonight’s news has brought great sadness to the people of the United Kingdom. The Sidney community joins with people around the world in mourning her loss. She will be warmly remembered by Fellows, students, staff and alumni alike. We extend our deepest condolences to the members of the Royal Family”.

A statement from the master of St Catharine’s College, professor Sir Mark Welland said: “On behalf of St Catharine’s College, I want to send our deepest condolences to His Majesty The King and all members of the Royal Family. Her Majesty The Queen’s reign was unparalleled in both its duration and her devotion to public service. We are profoundly saddened at the death of such a remarkable woman whose fortitude, integrity, unwavering commitment and humanity have set an example that is celebrated across the world. Long live The King.”

The Master of St Edmund’s College, Catherine Arnold OBE, added “I am deeply saddened to learn of the death of Her Late Majesty Queen Elizabeth II.

“The Late Queen’s steadfast faith and devotion to this country and to the Commonwealth over so many years has brought a sense of stability during times of uncertainty for which millions across the world are profoundly grateful. The whole College community mourns her passing.

“May Her Late Majesty rest in peace and rise in glory.”

The Queen on a visit to St John’s in 2011 to mark the College’s 500th birthday. Picture credit: St John’s College (59184914)
The Queen on a visit to St John’s in 2011 to mark the College’s 500th birthday. Picture credit: St John’s College (59184914)

Her Majesty the Queen visited Trinity College on several occasions. Her first visit to Cambridge as monarch was in October 1955, to open the new veterinary school.

In March 1996, the Queen opened new student accommodation at Burrell’s Fields.

The master of Trinity Dame Sally Davies said: “I am deeply sorry to hear of Her Majesty The Queen’s death. The whole College community mourns her passing. We are grateful for her lifetime of service to the country and to the Commonwealth.”

Wolfson College was officially opened by Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II on November 9, 1977, in the year of her Silver Jubilee. Accompanied by HRH the Duke of Edinburgh, then Chancellor of the University, she marked the occasion by unveiling the commemorative panel which is now located in the hall.

President, professor Jane Clarke, said: “This is a profoundly sad moment for the UK and the Commonwealth, and indeed for the millions around the world who have been inspired by Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II.

“We extend our condolences to the Royal Family. The college flag will be flown at half-mast throughout the period of national mourning to honour her memory.”

A statement released by the East Anglia’s Children’s Hospices said the charity is deeply saddened following the death of Her Majesty the Queen.

It continued: “We send our condolences to the Royal Family. We know this may be an upsetting time for staff, volunteers, supporters and all the children, young people and families receiving our care and support. Our thoughts are with those who are grieving, and with those for whom this news brings reflections of their own bereavements.

“Hospices have a special, long-lasting relationship with the Royal Family and we feel proud and honoured that The Duchess of Cambridge is our Royal Patron. The Queen’s legacy for the sector will continue through the support of her loved ones.”

The Imperial War Museum said books of condolence are open for visitors at IWM London, HMS Belfast, IWM Duxford and IWM North.

A statement said: “We at IWM are deeply saddened to hear of the death of Her Majesty The Queen and would like to express our condolences to all her family.

“IWM is hugely grateful to HM The Queen for the generous support and interest that she has taken in IWM during her reign and lifetime.

“As a mark of respect, it has been decided by the trustees and executive board of IWM to close our five branches on the day of HM The Queen’s state funeral, which will be announced by the Royal Family in due course.

“This decision was taken in consultation with the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport. IWM’s five branches will remain open as usual today.”

13 07 16 Queen visits East Anglian Air Ambulance EAAA to open their new HQ with Prince Phillip and the Duke of Cambridge, Prince William. Queen meets crew. Picture: Keith Heppell. (59184202)
13 07 16 Queen visits East Anglian Air Ambulance EAAA to open their new HQ with Prince Phillip and the Duke of Cambridge, Prince William. Queen meets crew. Picture: Keith Heppell. (59184202)

The Very Revd Mark Bonney, Dean of Ely, praised The Queen for her “dedication and commitment”.

In a statement, he said: “We are all deeply saddened by the news of the death of Her Majesty The Queen. For nearly all of us Her Majesty is the only monarch we have known, and this truly marks the end of an era. Her dedication and commitment to this country has been unwavering, and her Christian faith an inspiration. May she rest in peace and rise in glory.”

Tom Abell, chief executive of East of England NHS Trust, said: “We are deeply saddened by the news of the passing of Her Majesty the Queen. We are grateful for her outstanding commitment and service to our country over the decades. The Queen has been the very embodiment of selfless public duty and an incredible example for us all.

“The Royal Family have had a home at Sandringham within our region since 1862. We know that both the Queen and Duke of Edinburgh were very fond of it and enjoyed spending time there.

“We offer our deepest condolences to the Royal Family at this extremely difficult time.”

Cambridgeshire Constabulary chief constable Nick Dean said: “It is with great sadness that we today heard the news of the death of our monarch Her Majesty The Queen II. I know the people of Cambridgeshire and all who work and volunteer for the constabulary will join me in expressing what a great loss this is to the nation and the Commonwealth.

“Her Majesty The Queen, the longest serving monarch in our nation’s history, ruled us diligently throughout some of the greatest challenges we as a country have experienced. She was an example to us all with her tireless work ethic, love for the nation, dedication to duty and stoic leadership.

“Our thoughts are with her family at this truly difficult time, and we offer them all our sincerest condolences. Her Majesty touched so many lives across this nation and beyond and today we mourn her loss but celebrate her long and inspirational life.”

The Queen visits East Anglian Air Ambulance with Prince Philip and the Duke of Cambridge, Prince William, who was a co-pilot at the time. Picture: Keith Heppell
The Queen visits East Anglian Air Ambulance with Prince Philip and the Duke of Cambridge, Prince William, who was a co-pilot at the time. Picture: Keith Heppell

The Fitzwilliam Museum in Cambridge says it will close until September 10 as a mark of respect.

A statement said: “We are deeply saddened to hear of the death of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II.

“As the world mourns the loss of our much respected and dearly beloved Monarch, all of us at the Fitzwilliam extend our heartfelt condolences to the Royal Family.”

Great St Mary’s in Cambridge is open today (Friday). There will be a book of condolence, provided by the City of Cambridge, and prayers on the hour. The bells will toll at noon. There will be spoken services Friday and Saturday at 9am, 12pm and 6pm. An eccumenical Act of Remembrance at the University Church will be announced in the coming days.

Video game developer Frontier, which is based on Cambridge Science Park, released a statement: “We at Frontier are saddened to learn of the passing of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II, and join the rest of the United Kingdom and the Commonwealth in mourning the loss of our Head of State. We extend our deepest condolences to the Royal Family at this difficult time.”



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