With only minutes to go before the splendid Garter ceremony at Windsor Castle, the Queen Mother was missing. ‘Has anyone seen Queen Elizabeth?’ asked the Queen anxiously.
A search found her perched on a fire fender in a room at the top of the castle, watching the racing on television, fully dressed in her Garter finery, complete with ostrich feathers. ‘She was shouting at the screen: ‘Go in, go in, blast you, go in!’ says William Evans, a senior aide to Earl Mountbatten, who was a member of the Order and participating in the annual June ceremony. The Queen Mother’s frustrated cries were on account of her horse refusing to go into its starting stall.
An equerry was sent up to deliver the tight-lipped, formally sarcastic message: ‘Her Majesty wonders if Your Majesty will join Her Majesty for the Garter?’