The Queen kicked off a busy day of engagements in Somerset today, with her arrival at Castle Cary station aboard the Royal Train. She seemed in her element visiting Manor Farm Stables with the horses, and later visited a branch of Hauser & Wirth, the art gallery for which Princess Eugenie works.
Annie Maw, the Lord Lieutenant of Somerset met The Queen at the station. It is her first trip to the county since the Diamond Jubilee in 2012.
The schoolchildren of Castle Cary school were also there to greet her and welcomed the royal arrival enthusiastically. From there, Her Majesty went to Manor Farm Stables.
At the stables, the Monarch spoke to representatives from Bath University about their research projects; specifically around equestrian sport spinal injuries and racehorse welfare.
Even at almost 93, The Queen is not only a keen horsewoman, but also a knowledgeable and respected breeder of race horses. At Sandringham, Elizabeth has a studdery and regularly races her horses at national events.
Racehorse trainer Paul Nicholls showed her around the yard where The Queen visibly enjoyed meeting the horses on parade. Some of the horses she saw are co-owned by Sir Alex Ferguson.
After the visit Paul Nicholls, a Champion National Hunt horse trainer and owner of the stables, said: “It was a fantastic experience to bring Her Majesty to the yard and meet the superstar horses. She loved seeing the horses and gave them all a carrot and she knew as much as we do.”
Her Majesty went on to visit the King’s Bruton School. The school is marking its 500th anniversary this year and the official opening of the Queen Elizabeth Music School.
Elizabeth II unveiled a plaque there to commemorate the opening of the new music centre named in her honour. Staff and pupils took the opportunity to take the royal visitor on a tour of the new facility.
Some of the school children cooked and served a three course lunch which The Queen enjoyed along with other staff and pupils. The school choir then treated her to a concert.
Her last act at the school was to meet, name (and feed!) an Avon and Somerset police horse. Hugo was officially named Windsor, the name of the dynasty to which she belongs.
— Avon&Somerset Police (@ASPolice) March 28, 2019
From there, The Queen travelled onto Durslade Farm, the Somerset branch of the Hauser & Wirth Gallery, the same gallery where her granddaughter Princess Eugenie is one of the London based Directors.
Her Majesty joined schoolchildren taking part in a creative session. The gallery is very active in the local community and hosts regular talks, seminars, screenings and educational workshops for schoolchildren.
The gallery’s artwork also showcases Somerset landscapes. The Queen took the opportunity to view the works with artist Catherine Goodman and viewed exhibitions by Matthew Day Jackson.