2006, Tower of London
Tour and Luncheon at HM’s Palace and Fortress, The Tower of London.
Fifty two OHs, husbands, wives and partners were privileged to have a wonderful sunlit day at the Tower on 16 th September. We wish more places had been available, but we hope future events will make it possible for more to attend.
We arrived promptly at the HQ of the Royal Regiment of Fusiliers at 11am for coffee and a get-together. We were divided into two groups under the expert guidance of Two Yeomen Warders, Mr. Morton and Mr Powerstock. We were taken around the beautiful Tower precincts, so much resembling a Cathedral Close, and shown the timbered residences of the Yeomen and the Constable’s, General Sir Roger Wheeler’s and Lady Felicity’s Tower apartment, the sombre memorial tomb of Sir Thomas More and others executed at the Tower. We saw the Crown Jewels, crowns and maces galore, the incredible collection of gold servers, cruets etc., and a fantastic cinematic presentation of the Coronation.
Roger & Richard
John Clark, Trish Moore, Brian Clark, Nigel & Anne Giles
We then adjourned to the Mess of the Royal Regiment of Fusiliers for a glass or two of Australian fizzy, before a delicious lunch, served on regimental silver, provided by Gillie Rowland-Clarke, Chief Steward Paul Gillins and their staff.
After regaling ourselves, our President, Richard Le Fleming, rose to say how delighted he was that Rachel Blackburne-Kane and her daughter Diana, were with us today. He thanked Brigadier Roy Wilde CBE Colonel of the Royal Regiment of Fusiliers and Major Colin Bowes-Crick for allowing us to meet at their HQ. He thanked Gillie Rowland-Clarke of Flambé and John Clark (OH) for their superb organisation of the day. He then asked General Sir Roger Wheeler (OH) to say a few words to us. Roger modestly said he was sure OHs had heard quite enough from him at Lord’s, but he said he was not a Fusilier, but Constable of the Tower and Trustee of the Royal Palaces Charity.
The Tower had 2 million visitors a year and 35 Yeomen Warders and their families lived in the precincts; he was the 158 th Constable of the Tower and said he was going to ask Mr. Wilson, formerly of the Coldstream Guards, a senior Yeoman to speak to us.
In a suitably post prandial manner, Mr. Wilson gently told us about some of the horrors of the Tower’s history; he reminded us Sir Walter Raleigh had grown tobacco there; he spoke of the Torture of Guy Fawkes and the escapades of Colonel Blood. His task was deservedly greeted with applause.
Richard reminded us that the next OH event is the Remembrance Service on Saturday, 4 th November 2006, at 2.30pm prompt at St. Michael’s, Honiton, with a Carvery lunch at the Hare and Hounds at 12 noon. Our ever popular AGM, Reunion and Party is at the RAC Club, Pall Mall, on Thursday 30 th November 2006, at 6pm.