Treats for horses during Queen's visit

THE QUEEN has shown signs she is ready to be bowled over by a combination of Suffolk Punches - as her aides tell how she is keen to feed the county's pride and joy a carrot or two.

THE QUEEN has shown signs she is ready to be bowled over by a combination of Suffolk Punches - as her aides tell how she is keen to feed the county's pride and joy a carrot or two.

Palace flunkies have told staff at the Museum of East Anglian Life to have a tray of carrots on hand in case the Queen has the urge to feed a pair of the rare horses when they are shown to her in Stowmarket's town square.

Her Majesty will be stopping in Stowmarket with en route to a lavish lunch in Bury St Edmunds after first visiting Ipswich's waterfront.

Suffolk Punch Byron, who is 13-years-old, and the elderly Remus, a distinguished 23-years-old, will be led to see the horse-loving Queen from the nearby museum. Her keenly equestrian daughter, Princess Anne owns one of the horses that are featured in Ipswich Town's badge and have become a symbol for Suffolk across the world.


You may also want to watch:


There are only around 300 in the world at the moment – making them rarer than the endangered giant panda.

The horses, two of four at the museum, will be joined with historic 90-year-old agricultural steam engine, The Empress of Britain, another venerable institution of the county's farming life.

Most Read

Last used at the very start of the Queen's reign in the 1950s, it has been lovingly restored up by museum staff as part of an ongoing £20,000 restoration project. Some £7,500 has been raised so far to pay for the repairs.

Keen carriage driver Prince Philip will inspect the nine-and-half-tonne vehicle that was used to pull all kinds of farming machinery. A four-wheeled show wagon, which dates from the 1920s and was once owned by the Sainsbury family of supermarket fame, will also be on show

Meanwhile the Queen will tour an entirely different outlet: a farmers' market set up especially for her 15-minute stay during her golden jubilee tour.

Harry Bennett, operations manager at the museum, despite describing Byron as "a belligerent teenager" said that he performed well in rehearsals for the big day last week.

"I hope he's going to do the same tomorrow," he added. "There is a family interest in the horses – Princess Anne owns one and I think Prince Charles has one at Highgrove.

"The Empress and the Suffolk punch are two of the icons of the museum. We can rebuild the Empress but I'm afraid we can't rebuild old Remus. That's why we've brought in Byron to gradually replace him eventually."

The royal couple will also be meeting the mayor of Stowmarket, Keith Scarff, Pat and Norman Sparrow, of Needham Market, who are celebrating their golden wedding and town stalwarts Betty and Eric Jones during the stop over.

Her Majesty will also receive a posy of flowers from eight-year-old Hannah Davies, a pupil at Combs Ford Primary School, who is representing schools from the area.

Become a Supporter

This newspaper has been a central part of community life for many years. Our industry faces testing times, which is why we're asking for your support. Every contribution will help us continue to produce local journalism that makes a measurable difference to our community.

Become a Supporter
Comments powered by Disqus