Maisie gets a hat to go to Buck House

Get ahead, get a hat: Maisie Crawford, who is receiving a BEM from HM Lord Lieutenant for the Borough of the City of Londonderry, Dr Angela Garvey, on May 13, goes hat shopping for the event - and the garden party at Buckingham Palace.
Get ahead, get a hat: Maisie Crawford, who is receiving a BEM from HM Lord Lieutenant for the Borough of the City of Londonderry, Dr Angela Garvey, on May 13, goes hat shopping for the event - and the garden party at Buckingham Palace.

Recognised as Londonderry’s biggest fan of the Royal Family, Waterside women Maisie Crawford is gearing up for two big diary dates in the coming weeks.

In preparation, she spent part of last week doing something she hates, shopping to find a suitable outfit - and hat - to receive her BEM at Hillsborough on May 13, as well as for her visit to Buckingham Palace later in the month.

As with much of what Maisie gets up to, the shopping expedition was filled with gales of giggles and much merriment, as the game pensioner breezed from shop to shop leaving a trail of shop assistants in hysterics in her wake. And, no, she is not wearing a skirt to either palace; there are some things the pensioner tomboy simply won’t do.

“I’m going to wear the outfit to both events,” she said.

“I went shopping with my daughter Lynne. Well, that was an adventure, I can tell you,” she said, revealing that she got suited and booted in the Waterside.

“I’m going to get my BEM on May 13 at the service of investiture in Hillsborough Castle from Her Majesty’s Lord-Lieutenant for the County Borough of Londonderry, Dr Angela Garvey. She is a dote and I am even more thrilled that it is her presenting it to me because I have escorted her to Remembrance Services. She is absolutely lovely, so she is and I will be so proud when she pins the BEM on me.

“On May 19 I am going to Her Majesty’s Royal Garden Party in Buckingham Palace. I’m really excited about that. Most people in the city know that I just love the Queen. I have been fascinated by her since I saw her at the age of 10 when she came to Brooke Park. I met her last year in Coleraine when she visited the RBL and now I am going to London and I am going through the gates to have tea at her home.”