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Royal Family overwhelmed by visit to De Montfort University


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Thank you letters have been sent to De Montfort University on behalf of Her Majesty The Queen and Their Royal Highnesses, The Duke of Edinburgh and the Duchess of Cambridge, saying how they were “overwhelmed” by the welcome they received during their historic visit to the campus.

The letter sent from Buckingham Palace goes on to say how the crowds and performances in the Magazine Square “created a wonderful celebratory atmosphere to start the Jubilee visit”.

A letter sent on behalf of Kate, The Duchess of Cambridge, from St James’s Palace, says how DMU “made Her Royal Highness feel extraordinarily welcome and she thoroughly enjoyed her time with you, and was hugely impressed with all that she saw.”

While The Queen’s representative in the county, Lady Gretton, Lord-Lieutenant of Leicestershire, has written about the “wonderful sight” as the Royal Party walked through the Magazine Gateway to be greeted by thousands of students and staff.

Buckingham Palace was also full of praise for DMU’s award-winning Square Mile Project which uses the expertise of academics and students to make a difference in the Leicester community. The Duke of Edinburgh spent time during the visit meeting members of the Square Mile team and residents.

The letter called the project “an outstanding initiative and a tremendous achievement for your institution”.

DMU celebrated one of the proudest days in its history on Thursday 8 March when it became the first stop in Her Majesty The Queen’s Diamond Jubilee Tour of the nation.

It was also the first time The Duchess of Cambridge had taken part in an official royal engagement with The Queen and The Duke, without her husband, Prince William.

The university became the focal point of the world’s media with TV images and photographs of the Royal Visit being sent around the globe.

The letter from Buckingham Palace reads: “Her Majesty and Their Royal Highnesses, The Duke of Edinburgh and The Duchess of Cambridge, were overwhelmed by the warm and colourful welcome they received from the students and staff at the University.

“The student fashion parade was a wonderful event showcasing the incredible talent of the students at DMU. Her Majesty enjoyed meeting the designers and those involved in creating the show. The Duke of Edinburgh was interested to learn about the innovative Square Mile project. It is an outstanding initiative and a tremendous achievement for your institution.

“The crowds and performances in Magazine Square, particularly the Gospel Choir, Bollywood dancers and Chinese Umbrella Dancers created a wonderful celebratory atmosphere to start the Jubilee visit.”

More than 4,000 students and staff assembled  in Magazine Square and made a phenomenal noise to welcome the Royal Party, before Her Majesty was treated  to a celebration of DMU’s many cultures with Indian and Chinese dancing and a performance by the DMU Gospel Choir

Her Majesty and Her Royal Highness were then escorted to a fashion show featuring stunning creations by DMU’s Fashion graduates. His Royal Highness, meanwhile, was given a demonstration on several projects from the  ground-breaking Square Mile community initiative.

The Royal Party was presented with gifts including a unique headscarf and shawl for Her Majesty, as well as a framed portrait of a corgi by ten-year-old artist Chelsie White. Her Royal Highness received posies from local children, and His Royal Highness received a specially created 3D lenticular image of him driving a carriage and horses by DMU’s Professor Martin Richardson. The Duchess of Cambridge is having a pair of shoes made for her by Becka Hunt, from DMU’s footwear design course.

The Duke of Edinburgh’s representatives have sent a separate letter thanking DMU for his gift.

It reads “Prince Philip was most impressed by the work of Professor Martin Richardson and the hologram will certainly serve as a reminder of a very enjoyable and interesting visit to the University”.

Professor Dominic Shellard, vice-chancellor of De Montfort University, said: “Thanks to a tremendous amount of teamwork by so many people at DMU we believed we had organised something that was unique, something that really stood out, and something that would provide all those who witnessed it with memories to  cherish for a long time to come.

“Most importantly, we felt De Montfort University had organised something that would be a fitting tribute to Her Majesty and her magnificent 60 year reign.

“To have that confirmed with letters of thanks from Buckingham Palace, The Duchess of Cambridge’s representatives and Lady Gretton  is simply wonderful and a tribute to everyone at DMU who made sure the Royal Visit was such an outstanding success.”

Copies of the letters are attached for you to read.

Letter from Buckingham Palace

Letter from HRH The Duke of Edinburgh

Letter from Lady Gretton

Posted on Friday 30th March 2012

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