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Sunday 22 October 2017

Red-letter day as queen springs a royal surprise

Eileen Groves and her newborn great-great-granddaughter Elizabeth, who was named in honour of the queen. Arthur Carron/Collins

A WOMAN was royally surprised when she received an unexpected letter from the queen, writes Fiona Ellis.

Eileen Groves (88), from Raheny, Co Dublin, wrote a letter in March to Queen Elizabeth telling her how much she was looking forward to her visit.

In it she told the queen her newborn great-great-granddaughter had just been named Elizabeth in her honour.

Then, at the end of April, an official-looking letter featuring the royal crest dropped into the letterbox.

"I was very surprised, I couldn't believe it," she said.

The letter was written by a lady-in-waiting on behalf of the queen.

Originally from Kerry, Mrs Groves moved to England during World War Two to work as a nurse. There she met and married her British sailor husband. They moved back to Ireland in the late 1950s.

"In my letter I told her I was born in 1922 and I have followed her life story all my life. She was a very good mother, and a very good woman," she said.

  • In a poll conducted this week, 77pc of people here said they welcome Queen Elizabeth's visit, with just 12pc against.

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