Our day at Buckingham Palace! - Nancy Covey
6/28/2011 (updated 6/28/2011)

RT’s OBE Investiture June 28, 2011

So how was the day at BUCKINGHAM PALACE? Well, for starters I can’t believe I'm saying that I went there and didn’t have to buy a ticket!

Not only was it FABULOUS, the Investiture absolutely exceeded expectations. It was incredible! The royals pull out all the stops and boy are they good at this kind of thing. Wow.

Richard and daughter, Kami Thompson

To our surprise we got to drive through the front gates of Buckingham Palace - right where I have stood with the masses to see the Changing of the Guards…. but this time as we drove past the guards they clicked their heels! Very cool touch (thank goodness we rented the nice car) .

We drove to the inner courtyard and were let out of the car under the glass eaves at the red carpeted front staircase of the Palace right where Kate’s coach stopped for her post wedding brunch (for those of you that watched it live - like me!).

Kami and RT's son Jack Thompson

We were greeted and saluted everywhere we went - we got to walk through many gorgeous rooms, hallways and stairs. Everything red carpeted of course. Eye popping gold touches. There were so many different outfits on the officers and guards - bright silver swords, kilted attendants, Beefeaters in full regalia that had arrived by coach and horses, even the rare Gurkas that guard the Queen. They all made us feel very welcome, special and honored - even the guests. It was quite dreamy really.

And the ART .... wow!!! Richard and the other "Recipients" went into a different room than us for a briefing and he said the art collection there too was magnificent.

The investiture took place in the Ballroom which was very grand and beautiful. Many a state banquet and event has happened there so you could feel the history and importance of the room. Music was played the entire time by the Orchestra of the Band of the Blues & Royals… It gave a very nice atmosphere to the event.

The Queen actually had a good outfit on, though sadly no crown. As each Recipient came up she had a short chat, pinned their medal on and then shook hands. You had to then bow and step backwards while facing her. A couple people forgot to bow and were sent back. Richard of course was perfect and looked amazing in his traditional "morning suit" of top hat and tails. The dress code for the men was generally morning suit, uniform or "traditional dress". The Queen at 85 was very sharp and there was an attendant behind her that briefed her right before the Recipient came up, so she definitely knew that Richard was a musician.

Annie Lennox also got an OBE for her Service to Oxfam Charity and there were some good shots by the press of her and RT together. I also managed to get a couple of informal ones on my iPhone.

Annie Lennox with RT

Kami, Perri and I all wore hats designed by RT’s sister, Perri Ashby, that were incredibly stylish. Best in the Palace!! Quite Princess Kate. Perri had also designed hats for a lot of the guests at the Royal Wedding so we were in good hands in that department, even though I had mistakenly shopped for a hat in LA prior to the trip. What was I thinking?! Jack also went to the Investiture and he wore a full Scottish kilt which looked fantastic.

Nancy, Kami and RT's sister Perri

The investiture itself was about two hours (including the briefings) - perfectly timed so that everyone could be off to lunch at 1PM. Presumably the Queen too!

It was a great and extremely memorable day!! We were all still very jetlagged but had a fantastic time.

Nancy Covey

Off to Austria in the morning and next week Scotland! Nancy

Richard Thompson, Esq. O.B.E.
Folk Musician and Songwriter
For services to Music

Royal Investiture Ceremony