St. John Ambulance "Young Achievers" Reception at Buckingham Palace
Wednesday 25th November 2009

I have been a member of the St. John Ambulance organisation since I was five years old firstly as a Badger now as a Cadet; I really enjoy being a member and hope to stay with the organisation for many years to come.

I attend weekly meetings and learn important first aid skills and take part in many public events which I enjoy.

As a member of the organisation I was nominated and received an "Outstanding Achievements Award" for my charity fund raising efforts at the St. John Ambulance Buckinghamshire AGM on Tuesday 21st April 2009 I raised £5,200 for various charities.

Me and the Lord Lieutenant of Buckinghamshire

On Wednesday 25th November 2009, I was asked to attend the “Young Achievers Reception” at Buckingham Palace which was very exciting.

Dad and I travelled to the ICANDO Centre, near the Palace where we met up with the other nominated children, we were each allocated to a group, and had some time to get to know the other members of our group.

Then, one by one, each group was called out to practise for when they met the Princess, and each Badger and Cadet had a uniform check, to see whether they had all the correct uniform and looked smart. We had to learn the protocol on how to greet the Princess, and how to talk to her and what to do. We had to be introduced to the Princess by a senior St. John Ambulance officer before we were allowed to speak to her.

While we were talking to some of the other children in our group, I found it interesting to learn the reasons why they were there.

It was a long wait, but finally we set off on the short walk to the Palace. When we got outside the gates, we had a group photograph taken, and then the Palace guards and policemen let us through.

The Palace itself looked huge close up, as we walked through the great courtyard with buildings lining it, leading up to the main entrance with marble steps.

By this time, I was getting rather nervous about the upcoming arrival of the Princess. I knew what I would say to her though, Dad reassured me that it would all be fine. but that didn’t stop the butterflies in my stomach!

The outside of the Palace was stunning and imposing enough, but the inside was absolutely immaculate and very lavishly furnished. The walls were decorated with paintings of the Royal family, and there was a regal – looking red carpet on the floor. We were lead into the Bow room, and while we waited for the Princess to arrive, we were served drinks and food by the Palace footmen and waiters who were all very formally dressed and were very polite.

When the Princess arrived, we all had to be silent as a sign of respect to her. She made her way around all of the groups one by one, talking to the Badgers, Cadets and the few parents who were allowed to attend the reception. We were in group E, so we had a little while to wait. I spent most of that time looking at the huge room, it was so magnificent, but sadly, because of Palace security, Dad wasn’t allowed to take any photographs, but the Royal Photographer was on hand to take some photographs of us.

When the Princess came to our group, we remembered what the leaders had told us and greeted her, she talked to us one by one, and when she came to Dad and I, we found that she was very polite and took a great deal of interest in what we had to say. I told her that I was here because of all the charity work that I do, and because of my Spindles Farm protest. I told her all about my visits to The Horse Trust in Speen, she had visited the rescued ponies and donkeys there recently as she is their Patron. I also told her about how I go horse riding each week at the South Bucks RDA at Fulmer.

Meeting another member of the Royal family was amazing, but meeting them in Buckingham Palace was fantastic. It was an experience I will never forget

What Katy Did
All About Me

In Buckingham Palace Courtyard

Meeting HRH the Princess Royal
in the Bow room of Buckingham Palace

Buckingham Palace

In my St. John Ambulance uniform