Allison Kay: Family memories of the Queen

Daughter Caroline Presents the Queen with a Posy

My memories are of my daughter Caroline meeting the Queen in November 2008 in London.

The All Blacks were in London and there was a big event to promote the 2011 Rugby World Cup being held in New Zealand. An oversized rugby ball structure was erected near Tower Bridge and the Queen and the Duke of Edinburgh attended the event, along with John Key, who had only just become New Zealand’s Prime Minister.

Of course, any event involving royalty requires a flower girl to present flowers to the queen, and my husband Kevin (who worked at MFAT at the time) was asked if Caroline would like to be flower girl.

I am not sure if father or daughter was most excited! I was unable to get the day off work (should have pulled a sickie), but Kevin and Caroline had the most wonderful day. You can see Kevin looking on proudly in the left of the wider photo .

Caroline presenting a posy to the Queen in London in 2008. Her father Kevin looks on proudly at the left. The rugby ball structure is at the back right.

When I talked to Kevin about it this week, he laughed and reminded me of the story that it was 2 degrees Celcius that day, and the All Blacks took shelter from the cold in the rugby ball before the Queen’s party arrived.

Caroline and the Queen with the Duke of Edinburgh behind at the left and Prime Minister John Key

Caroline had to stand on the spot designated to her outside for half an hour – she had to be more brave than the All Blacks.

The Queen asked Caroline what school she attended and then asked her about the school’s motto, which was on her blazer.

She then thanked her for the flowers – the organisers had been advised that the Queen only liked to receive small posies.

A lovely family memory.

Allison Kay
15 September 2022

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