It is with a very heavy heart that we learn of the passing of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II – the world’s greatest queen.
As well as being the longest reigning British Monarch, Her Majesty was also the longest reigning female monarch in world history.
In 1947 at the age of just 21 the young Princess Elizabeth promised to dedicate her life – “be it long or short” – to the service of Her people. She lived up to that promise every day of her long life over the last 75 plus years. A life of service, devotion and duty as head of a state, the nation and the Commonwealth of over 2.5 billion people was witnessed across the globe during her many visits both around the UK and overseas and it is fair to say that she was loved and revered by all. She was a symbol of stability through decades in which the world has seen a great many changes.
Hertfordshire was well known to Her Majesty as her Mother’s family live in the north of the county and indeed my predecessor as Lord-Lieutenant is Sir Simon Bowes-Lyon, her first cousin. She had many fond memories of her time spent in Hertfordshire.
The Queen was a regular visitor to the county from the very beginning of her reign, her last visit being in 2016 to Berkhamsted School – of which she was Patron – where thousands of local people turned out to welcome their Queen.
I had the honour and privilege to meet The Queen on several occasions and on each she made me laugh with her wicked sense of humour at the same time as her sharp mind focused on the most poignant issues of the day.
Approximately 85% of the British population have only ever known one monarch in their lives and what a privilege it has been for all of us, young and old, to be able to have called this great lady “Our Queen”.
It has been the greatest honour of my life to have been appointed Her Majesty’s personal representative and to have served a truly great monarch.
On behalf of YOPEY, which is one of many organisations of which I have the honour to be Patron, I send sincerest condolences to King Charles III and all the Royal Family.
May “Our Queen” rest in eternal peace.
Robert Voss CBE CStJ
His Majesty’s Lord-Lieutenant of Hertfordshire
And also Patron of the YOPEY charity