Tamworth healthcare hero and daughter thrilled by ‘once in a lifetime’ trip to Jubilee Pageant

Categories: Care and People & Places.

A Tamworth mum and daughter have told of their thrilling “once in a lifetime” visit to London to enjoy the spectacle of the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee Pageant at Buckingham Palace.

Amy Foster and her daughter Ellanor, aged nine, won tickets for front row seats at the event on Sunday (June 5) to thank them for their tireless fundraising work for St Giles Hospice.

The procession featured carnival floats, circus acts and appearances by famous faces from music, film, sport and the arts, including Sir Cliff Richard, Jools Holland and Ed Sheeran.

Amy said: “The Jubilee Pageant was an absolutely amazing event and we were so excited to be there. It was a once in a lifetime experience that we will always remember. We were right in front of the stage and we got to see every part of the spectacular show.

“It was phenomenal to be a part of it and I was so emotional that I burst into tears as we passed through the gates. We were just buzzing afterwards and stayed up until one in the morning because we couldn’t switch off.”

Amy and Ellanor were awarded the tickets to the pageant by Smooth Radio after they were nominated for an unsung heroes award. Over the last three years Amy, who works as a healthcare assistant at St Giles, and Ellanor have raised more than £2,000 to support the work of the hospice, which cares for patients and their families who are living with a terminal illness.

Despite the gloomy weather forecast, the day of the pageant remained dry and Amy said the conditions were just perfect for the show. “We wore our posh dresses but took our anoraks along just in case – but luckily we didn’t need them,” Amy added.

“The weather was just right. Some of the floats had light shows that wouldn’t have worked in the bright sunshine, and if it had rained I’m sure some of the acrobatics wouldn’t have been able to go ahead. One of Ellanor’s favourite acts was a trapeze artist hanging from a balloon who swung right over the crowd.

“We also loved Ed Sheeran and seeing the Queen. At first I was a bit surprised when Ed stopped singing after just one song but then it was great to see the door on the Palace balcony open and we saw the Queen coming out. It was a wonderful moment and we were so thrilled to see her. We were also close to the rest of the Royals and it was really great to see them too, especially little Louis and Charlotte who really seemed to be enjoying themselves.”

Amy said that visiting Buckingham Palace was a dream come true for Ellanor. “She couldn’t believe that we got to visit the house where the Queen lived and she got to touch the golden gates at the entrance,” she said. “She also loved the Queen’s golden carriage, which looked like something out of a fairytale.

“She asked me who all the famous people were in the procession and I pointed them all out to her. Being so young, she didn’t know who Noddy Holder was and I told her that coming from the Midlands that was unforgiveable!”

The Royal Jubilee treat comes just weeks after Ellanor won the Child of the Year Award for her fundraising at the Spirit of Tamworth Awards, organised by Tamworth Round Table.

Elinor Eustace, Income Generation Director at St Giles Hospice, said: “We’re absolutely delighted that Ellanor and Amy had such a wonderful time at the Platinum Jubilee celebrations. They thoroughly deserved their unsung heroes award and like everyone who raises funds or volunteers for us, we cannot thank them enough for all they do for St Giles Hospice.”

For more information about St Giles Hospice and the expert care it provides, please visit www.stgileshospice.com


PICTURE CAPTION: Amy Foster and her daughter Ellanor outside Buckingham Palace for the Platinum Jubilee celebrations


St Giles Hospice is a registered charity offering high-quality specialist care free of charge for people living with diseases which are terminal or incurable as well as providing support for their families and carers.

Patients come from across the hospice’s catchment area, which ranges from Ashby-de-la-Zouch and Atherstone in the east, to Cannock in the west – and from Burton and Uttoxeter in the north, to Sutton Coldfield and Coleshill in the south.

Care is offered at the hospice’s centres in Whittington and Sutton Coldfield and in patients’ own homes across the region.

St Giles spends over £10 million a year providing its specialist services and with little more than a third of this funded by the Government, the registered charity relies heavily on donations and income generation from the local community.

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