Harry meets the Chelsea Pensioners

Prince Harry greeting the hospitals oldest resident Joe Britton, aged 99

One of our clients at work is Royal Hospital Chelsea. The hospital was founded by Charles II in 1682 to house elderly and infirm war veterans in their retirement ensuring they enjoy their retirement peacefully.

The hospital is situated in stunning grounds in Chelsea in London. Every June the hospital hosts an annual Founder’s Day Parade in which the pensioners parade in the hospital’s Figure Court.

Each Founder’s Day the pensioners are reviewed by a member of the royal family. This year Prince Harry was the first serving officer to review the Pensioners’s Parade since HRH The Duke of Kent in 1974.

The Chelseas Pensioners standing to attention during the ceremony

Although I don’t work on the account I was asked to help out at the event. As you can imagine I did not hesitate in saying yes to helping out.

The weather was perfect and the hospital’s beautiful grounds looked lovely in the sunshine. The men in scarlet stood to attention as Prince Harry entered amid a fanfare of trumpets. The media scrambled for a good shot of the prince as he walked past speaking to a number of pensioners on his way.

Chelsea Pensioners joining the Parade

One bold pensioner, William Titchmarsh 85, asked the prince when he was getting married. A blushing Prince Harry replied “not for a long time” and then added “who put you up to this?”

Ironically this incident happened right in front of the media pen, and as you can imagine it was instantly jumped upon and got into pretty much every paper in the UK and further afield the same and the following day.

All in all, a fun day’s work and a great story.

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