Yesterday we went to a tea party at the House of Lords. This was organised by the Royal Commonwealth Society,and I was invited as a thank you from them for judging their annual essay competition over the years. I arrived back from the Netherlands the evening before,and was on the move again! We caught the 11.30 train to Paddington.
London though was forecasted to be dry,and indeed we arrived to a warmish,but overcast Westminster . Walking past the magnificent Houses of Parliament. We were asked to go in through the “Black Rod’s entrance”, which is tucked away around the corner. We passed the grand gates marked “Sovereign’s Entrance” through which obviously Her Majesty enters the grounds and found the police guarding the Black Rod’s entrance.
Once inside we were asked to stand on this red dot in front of a huge wall mounted camera and asked to give our “best smile”!
Photos were taken and we were issued with a little copy of it on a piece of paper with date/time and our details. This has to be worn around the neck,with a red string which had a plastic clip to hold the paper. Searched and asked to go under the scanner. I wondered if the ancient building must wonder at all this goings on,it surely was not built to house scanners and security cameras!
Once inside we followed the seating order,we were(my husband came as my guest) on table 6, which was next to the dignitaries.Lord Howell, Baroness Young, the Director of the RCS, Lord Popat and several others. I however did catch a glimpse of Kenneth Clarke ! The tea was magnificent and there were people from all walks, Ex Diplomats, public figures and various other dignitaries.
We had a great time and throughly enjoyed the hospitality and the grand surroundings,and when it was time to go the heavens opened! It was a long and damp walk to the nearest tube station,but as they say it was worth it!
On the terrace,just before it began to rain. So it was rather a damp walk back to the station,but as they say;it was worth it!
Lord Howell, addressing us.