Queen completes traditional Maundy Thursday cathedral tour by handing out money at Leicester
The Queen has handed out Maundy money at Leicester Cathedral and has now been present on Maundy Thursday at every cathedral in England.
Hundreds of well-wishers lined the route from Leicester station to the cathedral, where the last Plantagenet king, Richard III, is buried.
The Queen gave two purses, one white and one red, to each of the 91 men and 91 women – representing each of her 91 years – who were chosen in recognition of the service they have provided to the church and community.
The red purse contains a £5 coin, commemorating the centenary of the House of Windsor, and a 50p coin commemorating Sir Isaac Newton, while the white purse contains uniquely minted Maundy coins, equating in pence to the Queen's age.
The Dean of Leicester, David Monteith, said the occasion was a 'huge honour'. He added: 'Wherever the Queen goes it's a great day, but the fact that we complete the series of cathedrals that the Queen has visited over her reign on Maundy Thursday means we are the triumph of all that work and we couldn't be more pleased.'
The Queen was accompanied by Duke of Edinburgh for the service, which dates back to the 13th century.
Among the recipients of the coins was Ted Cassidy, who said: 'It's been such a wonderful occasion – she's amazing because she smiled at every single person and then spoke to the children at the end. I thought "She's just incredible, a wonderful woman". I got a surprise letter four months ago and I couldn't believe it, it was such a wonderful surprise.'
Another recipient, Mavis Moore, 86 and from Ashfordby, said: 'It was an experience. I couldn't believe it. I've been excited and telling everyone since I found out.'
Jane Gumbs, of Beaumont Leys said: 'It was really nice, lovely, and to see the Queen – it was amazing. She looked young.'
The Royal Maundy is an ancient ceremony which originates in the commandment Jesus gave to love one another after washing the feet of his disciples on the night of the Last Supper.