Prince Philip’s death stirs royal memories for Storrington man

The death of Prince Philip has stirred royal memories for a Storrington man.

Tuesday, 13th April 2021, 11:11 am

Brian Burns was doing his National Service with the RAF in Aden in 1954 when the Queen and the Duke of Edinburgh visited the base.

He said that, despite the temperature being close to 90F and humid, the Queen looked ‘as cool as a cucumber.’

Brian, who spent two years in Aden, later sent copies of photos taken of the royal couple at the time to the Queen when she sent out a call for any photographs that were taken during that Commonwealth visit.

The Queen and Prince Philip in Aden in the 1950s

In a letter accompanying the photos, Brian told the Queen that the photo of her in the car “was taken on your way to visit the Command Hospital that was run by the Queen Alexandria Nurses….definitely out of bounds to the lower ranks such as me, although I did try to go sick a few times but failed miserably.”

The second photo was taken at a garden party in the evening. Brian told the Queen in his letter: “You might be amused to learn that I was among the lads lining the route on your way to the reception and as you travelled slowly past we were immediately picked up by a truck and whisked through the back streets at great speed to line up once more ahead of you!”

Brian was surprised to later receive a thank-you letter from Buckingham Palace.

A lady in waiting replied that Her Majesty and the Duke of Edinburgh had recalled the visit ‘with great pleasure.’

The Queen and Prince Philip in Aden in the 1950s

And she added that the Queen “enjoyed your amusing memories of the occasion.”