Longest serving lollipop lady on “granny to granny chat" with The Queen

"It was just a Granny talking to another Granny".
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That's how down-to-earth the Queen was, according to Irene Reid from Longridge, who received an MBE from the late monarch in 2012.

Mrs Reid, 82, has been a lollipop lady for nearly 54 years, and was recognised for her services to road safety at Buckingham Palace.

>>>Click here to read about Irene's amazing service

Irene Reid at Buckingham PalaceIrene Reid at Buckingham Palace
Irene Reid at Buckingham Palace
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She said: "It was the last year that the Queen gave out the MBE's, so I was quite chuffed by that.

"I was at Buckingham Palace and you are told what to do; where to walk, that it's Your Majesty then ma'am, and so on.

"I was waiting for my name to be called out, and then I walked forward.

"I was thinking, 'I'm just a lollipop lady and that's the Queen'. I was as you might imagine, meeting the Queen.

Irene Reid at workIrene Reid at work
Irene Reid at work
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"But when I approached her and she smiled, everything was natural.

"She asked if I was a lollipop lady and how long I'd done it for.

"At that point it was 40-odd years, the longest-serving lollipop person in the country. The Queen said 'oh my word, that's a very long time'.

"It was her Diamond jubilee year, so I said 'It is ma'am and so is 60 years, and that all of us in the Ribble Valley send their very best."

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Irene said: "We got into quite a chat. She's a great-grandmother, I have 10 great-grandchildren, and it was just like talking Granny to Granny.”

Mrs Reid said: "Her death is very sad, quite surreal. It feels like a big shock even though we were expecting it.

"No matter what was going on in her life, she was great."

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