Fit for a Lord – Guest post by Maggie Moncrieff (my Mum)
It has been a very busy, happy year celebrating. In chronological order, as they say, our golden wedding in April, Chris’s 80th birthday and recently reaching 50 years of reporting politics for the Press Association in Parliament, and trailing exhaustingly after Maggie Thatcher!
To mark Chris’s birthday, Lord Cormack very kindly arranged a lunch for us in the Lords’ dining room with the wonderful Baroness Boothroyd and Lord Tebbit, our former MP.
It was a crisp, sunny morning and we arrived in plenty of time, duly noted by the attendant who boomed, “You’re a bit early”. As we waited to be collected various personalities passed through and Chris whispered their names to me.
Lord Cormack arrived and asked if I would like to see the chamber. So he took us all round the Lords part of the Palace of Westminster.We saw the glittering Queen’s throne and the Princes’ chamber which was on the original site of the royal children’s room and had amazing paintings, cornice-high, of the family of Tudors and Stuarts on the opposite wall.
So amazing, and the decorations were breathtaking. We peeped into the Long Room where the Lords meet for dinners, with a long table reaching the full length of the room, each place setting with its stiff red furled napkin on the glistening white cloth.
Then onwards into the dining room where the Lords meet their invited guests; a lovely warm room with tables for four dotted around and plush furnishing in rich red.
After lunch Lord Cormack graciously escorted us off the premises after a truly memorable occasion recalled with great pleasure.
Update April 2016: Maggie Moncrieff 8 February 1928 to 17 April 2016