So Far So Good, Behind the Scenes at Buckingham Palace
by Malcolm Wells
7th April 2022
Some fifty of us gathered awaiting an exploration of the palace as a very timely start to our platinum jubilee celebrations. We looked forward to looking behind the special occasions balcony.
Two references to Buckingham Palace emerged later. Malcolm explained how he had performed as a cellist in the Royal Artillery string quartet at a state banquet for European royalty and other dignitaries. He later returned there to be invested with an MBE, in such resplendent uniform that June Whitfield , another recipient, approached him as a royal footman.
The early part of his talk covered his career in the Royal Artillery, principally as a member of its orchestra. He also played in its band at Wembley when England faced Brazil in a football international. The Desert War in 1990 saw his group urgently building a field hospital in the desert to receive casualties.
Much of the talk emphasised his commitment to charitable work, initially helping the link of especially trained dogs to disabled people. Noodle the poodle revolutionised the life of a young man who had been very badly injured while playing rugby. More recent years have seen him leading fundraising for St Wilfrid’s Hospice in Chichester, and, currently, with the “Literacy in a Box” initiative. This is dedicated to giving children a better life through education, particularly in Zambia.
The membership chuckled throughout as Malcolm’s talk was punctuated by his thoroughly entertaining dry humour and we great admired his clear life commitment to helping other people.