The reception saw over 1,500 guests from Delhi’s business, political and diplomatic sectors gather to toast The Queen as she celebrates this important landmark birthday.
The Duke paid a personal tribute to his grandmother in a speech (copied below).
British High Commissioner to India, Sir Dominic Asquith KCMG said:
I am honoured and delighted that the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge, the Hon. Minister Col. Rajyavardhan Rathore and so many eminent guests are here with us this evening to celebrate such a special birthday. We are also celebrating the sustained partnership between our two countries, and the warm and intimate ties.
SPEECH BY THE DUKE OF CAMBRIDGE
Thank you, High Commissioner, for your introduction and thank you, distinguished guests, ministers, and all, for being here tonight.
Tonight, we are celebrating the links between our two countries. This is the first time Catherine and I have been to India and we have been incredibly impressed to see just how much this great country is on the move, and how India’s dynamism is matched by the warmth and welcome of its diverse people.
I am honoured that we also have a chance, tonight, to celebrate a very happy milestone for the United Kingdom and for my family in particular.
Next week, Her Majesty The Queen, my grandmother, turns 90. I am so grateful to all of you for turning out tonight to help us mark that occasion.
The Queen is very fond of India, having visited this great country three times during her reign. And India of course is the biggest country in the Commonwealth, the family of nations to which she has committed so much of her life’s work. India’s contribution to the Commonwealth is something that is enormously important to her.
As my grandmother’s birthday gives us a chance to celebrate the partnership between our nations, I hope you don’t mind if I take the opportunity to pay tribute to The Queen on a more personal note.
I am incredibly lucky to have my grandmother in my life. As she turns 90, she is a remarkably energetic and dedicated guiding force for her family.
And I am so glad that my children are having the chance to get to know The Queen. George and Charlotte, too, will discover how lucky they are to have such a wonderful great-grandmother – a role model for the rest of their lives.
Now, it is important that everyone here tonight understands that I am here as The Queen’s representative. She may be my grandmother, but she is also very much the boss! And with that in mind, she has given me a message that I am privileged to read out to you all tonight:
MESSAGE FROM HER MAJESTY THE QUEEN
Prince Philip and I send our warmest good wishes to all you attending this special Garden Party.
I am delighted that The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge have been able to join you this afternoon during their visit to your country.
I have fond memories of our previous visits to India. This event today is a wonderful opportunity to celebrate the enduring friendship between our two countries, our shared culture and the business opportunities we can create together.
It is with great pleasure that I entrust another generation of my family to strengthen and renew our bonds. Signed, Elizabeth R.
(Message from Her Majesty ends)
Now I can report back to Granny that I have done my duty!
Distinguished guests, ladies and gentlemen, thank you for joining with us to wish The Queen a very happy birthday. Bahut dhanyavaad.
Follow the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge’s visit to India and Bhutan on:
- Twitter @UKinIndia #RoyalVisitIndia
- Whatsapp: save the number +91-9654141882 to your contacts and send ‘hello’
For media queries, please contact:
Stuart Adam, Director,
Press and Communications
British High Commission,
Chanakyapuri, New Delhi 110021
Tel: 44192100; Fax: 24192411
Follow us on Twitter, Facebook, Flickr, YouTube, LinkedIn, Storify, Eventbrite, Blogs, Foursqare, Instagram, Snapchat @UKinIndia, Periscope @UKinIndia, Vine