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Royal flowers for St Joseph’s 

An exquisite bouquet of flowers, designed by Philippa Craddock, used to decorate St George’s Chapel for the royal wedding of the Duke and Duchess of Sussex, has been donated to the patients of St Joseph’s Hospice, Hackney, the day after the wedding. The bouquet, made up of spring blooms, included forget-me-nots, sweet peas, jasmine, astrantia and sprigs of myrtle.

An exhilarating moment for the charity, Nigel Harding, Chief Executive at St Joseph’s said: ‘We are honoured to receive this wonderful gift. The flowers are simply stunning and our patients were both surprised and delighted to receive them. A huge thank you to Philippa Craddock and her team, and of course to the royal bride and groom.’

The moment was exceptional for 89-year old respite patient, Pauline Clayton, an embroiderer by profession who had a hand in embroidering the 15-foot train of Queen Elizabeth II’s wedding dress, in 1947 when she was only 19. She said, ‘We were on rationing then, so we weren’t allowed to sew on any embellishments, the train was embroidered. There were four of us girls working on it and we earned 49 and a half hours’ overtime! I helped to make many of her dresses during my 20-year career with Norman Hartnell. It’s a lovely coincidence to be at St Joseph’s and receive these wedding flowers, beautiful and special.’