Cheering schoolchildren from local schools including St Paul's, St Mary's and Chesterton were amongst the crowds waving flags and relishing the privilege of glimpsing the Queen on her visit to Cambridge today.
The royal helicopter landed at 11am and the Queen and the Duke of Edinburgh arrived at the Botanic Garden shortly afterwards. They were greeted by the Vice Chancellor of the University, Professor Sir Leszek Borysiewicz, the Mayor of Cambridge, Councillor Sheila Stuart, and the Lord Lieutenant, Hugh Duberly. After the formal ceding of authority to Her Majesty, symbolised by the lowering of ceremonial maces, the Queen proceeded through to the Sainsbury Laboratory. Here she met those most involved in this landmark project to create a world-leading research laboratory studying plant development, before unveiling a carved stone inscription commemorating the opening.
In an address of welcome and acknowledgement of the philanthropy of Lord Sainsbury, the Vice-Chancellor of the University also paid tribute to the Duke of Edinburgh, who has been an indefatigable champion and supporter of the University in his role as Chancellor, from which he will retire this summer.