‘Youthful’ Queen meets Yoko Ono at Museum of Liverpool
Yoko Ono, who had flown in from New York for the occasion, said she was struck by how youthful the Queen was looking and was impressed by her choice of colours.
The Queen wore a burgundy wool coat and dress by Karl Ludvig with a matching hat by Angela Kelly.
Ono, herself 78, said: “I was so amazed. That particular colour (burgundy) – it made her look so young, so elegant. She is always elegant. It’s always nice to meet her.”
The meeting came as the Royal couple were given a 50-minute tour of the new building on the city’s waterfront, after which the Queen unveiled a plaque commemorating the occasion.
She loves you! Yoko Ono flies in from New York to watch Queen open Museum of Liverpool
The Queen and the Duke of Edinburgh traveled up to Liverpool today to officially open a new museum that honours the city. One of the biggest draws of the Museum of Liverpool promises to be the exhibits dedicated to the city’s most famous export, The Beatles. John Lennon’s widow, Yoko Ono, also attended the opening. There was a hush in the main hall as the Queen arrived. She smiled widely as she shook hands with Yoko – who had flown in from New York especially – and the Japanese philanthropist later raved about their meeting.
Speaking of the Queen’s burgundy wool coat and dress, designed by Karl Ludvig, Yoko said she was struck by how youthful the Queen was looking and was impressed by her choice of colours.
She said: ‘I was so amazed. That particular colour (burgundy) – it made her look so young, so elegant. ‘She is always elegant. It’s always nice to meet her.’
The Queen and Duke were given a 50-minute tour of the new building on the city’s waterfront, after which the Queen unveiled a plaque commemorating the occasion.
Writer Phil Redmond, who is the museum’s chairman said: ‘She was really interested and got engaged in a lot of things as we walked around.’
Mr Redmond said she put him at his ease and even reminded him about one of her official duties.
He said: ‘I had forgotten to invite her to sign the guest book and she told me “You are supposed to get me to sign the book”.’
Dressed for the occasion: The Queen wore a burgundy wool coat and dress by Karl Ludvig with a matching hat by Angela Kelly
The Queen was presented with a posy by seven-year-old Arron Wilson, a pupil at Kings Community Primary School in Toxteth, who said it had been ‘the best day ever’.
She was also shown photographs by Mike McCartney, brother of former Beatle Sir Paul, The People’s Republic gallery, which is about the experience of living in the city, and The City Soldiers gallery which tells the story of the King’s Regiment – one of Britain’s oldest regiments.
The final exhibition the royal couple saw before the unveiling of the plaque commemorating their visit was The Liverpool Overhead Railway gallery which tells the story of the first electric elevated railway in the world.
After the Queen unveiled the plaque there was a warm round of applause before she left to meet people in the crowd of a few hundred well-wishers – some carrying Union flags – who gathered outside the museum.
Colin Edwards, 70, from Ruthin, North Wales, was one of the people the Queen spoke to.
He gave her a photograph which he had taken of her before the wedding of the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge.
He said: ‘I told her she looked so happy and radiant that day, looking forward to the wedding.’
Norman Williams, 75, from Wrexham, North Wales, dropped his camera at her feet.
He said: ‘I dropped the camera right in front of her and she said “Is that yours?” and I said “I am sorry”. I thought she was going to pick it up for me for a minute, then one of the security men did.’
The Museum of Liverpool opened to the public on July 19, and has already welcomed more than half a million people through its doors.
It is the world’s first national museum devoted to the history of a regional city, looking at Britain and the world through the eyes of Liverpool.
VIP guest: Yoko Ono flew in from New York especially for the opening of the Museum of Liverpool
To mark the Queen’s trip to Liverpool the Changing the Guard ceremony at Buckingham Palace took on a Merseybeat theme today as the band of the Coldstream Guards played a medley of Beatles songs.
After leaving the city shortly before midday, the royal couple crossed the River Mersey by car through the Kingsway Tunnel, a route the Queen opened in 1971.
Their arrival in New Brighton was greeted by hundreds of flag-waving well-wishers who clapped and cheered as the purple Bentley pulled up outside the Floral Pavilion Theatre.
The Queen and Philip smiled towards the crowd before making their way inside to meet VIPs including the Mayor of Wirral Moira McLaughlin, Wallasey MP Angela Eagle and Wirral Council leader Steve Foulkes.
The purpose of today’s visit was to celebrate the regeneration of New Brighton, a one-time famous seaside resort which has suffered decades of economic decline.
The rebuilt Floral Pavilion is one of the key projects designed to bring visitors back to the area.
The royal couple were given a 10-minute briefing on the regeneration schemes by Steve Parry of Neptune Developments before the Queen unveiled a plaque to mark the occasion.
She was then introduced to veteran comedian Ken Dodd, famous for his Diddy Men act, and remarked that he was due to perform at the theatre tonight.
The 83-year-old funnyman replied: ‘We were hoping you would stay for the show.’