ParliamentRoyal FamilySpeeches

Gagan Mohindra – 2022 Tribute to HM Queen Elizabeth II

The tribute made to Gagan Mohindra, the Conservative MP for South West Hertfordshire, in the House of Commons on 10 September 2022.

It is a sad honour to be called to speak in these tributes to Her late Majesty. As many colleagues have said, she was a constant throughout our lives. I have said before that I regard myself as a son of the Commonwealth; one of the proudest realisations in the past 48 hours is that while we may have lost our Queen, the world has lost “the” Queen.

The Queen visited South West Hertfordshire a few times, and the last two visits of which I am aware are emblematic of who she was. In 2010, she opened the Permanent Joint Headquarters in Northwood, in the south of my constituency; all my ex-military friends are sorrowful about her passing. Her most recent visit was in 2016, when she came to visit Berkhamsted School, of which my hon. Friend the Member for Witney (Robert Courts) is an alumnus. She was a patron of the school, which was celebrating its 475th anniversary. When I visited the school recently, I could still see the look of wonder in the eyes of the children who had had the honour of meeting her. I never had that honour, but when I was a lot younger, on the rare occasions when my parents used to drive past Buckingham Palace, we always looked with fondness to see whether the royal standard was up. My father, probably treasonously, used to say, “Is Auntie Liz in?”

Like most families, mine have been speaking about the Queen over the past few days. My brother-in-law mentioned that normally people have photos of their loved ones in their wallet or purse. I would argue that each and every one of us has a photo of our loved one, the Queen, by virtue of the notes. I think that that is a fitting tribute to someone I regard as an amazing woman.

On behalf of the constituents of South West Hertfordshire, may I send my condolences to the whole royal family? They have lost a loved one, and the country has lost a great champion for our values. I do not think that there will be another like her for many generations to come. God save the King.