ParliamentRoyal FamilySpeeches

Jo Churchill – 2022 Tribute to HM Queen Elizabeth II

The tribute made to Jo Churchill, the Conservative MP for Bury St Edmunds, in the House of Commons on 10 September 2022.

Thank you, Madam Deputy Speaker, for your indulgence in allowing the Whips to speak and pay tribute.

I rise to give thanks for the wonderful, long life of Her Majesty, our Queen Elizabeth, on behalf of myself, but also the people of the Bury St Edmunds constituency. As many others have said, she was ours—for each and every one of us. She was special to us individually, young and old, in this great country, in the Commonwealth and beyond. We have relied on her to be there, and on her constancy, her service, her humour and her love.

Many in this Chamber, as others have said, have recounted amusing tales of those twinkling eyes resting on them and that sense of fun. She has visited my constituency, like others, many times, the final occasion being for the Maundy service in our cathedral, and she left her mark.

But as I sat in this Chamber and we listened to the King yesterday, as my hon. Friend the Member for Newcastle-under-Lyme (Aaron Bell) said, I wanted to say this: that our thoughts and prayers are with her family and her friends, who, for their entire lives, have had to share with us their mother, their grandmother, their great-grandmother, their friend or, for her dear late husband, his wife. May they now be comforted by us, and by our expressions of gratitude and love for the late Queen, as they carry on, as she did, with duty and stoicism, constantly and consistently showing us the way. So to her we say thank you, from the bottom of our hearts, although it feels not enough. As her faith took her through her life, may it take her on her final journey, and may she rest in peace.

Finally, earlier this week I was truly honoured to be appointed Vice-Chamberlain, so I say with feeling, in anticipation of having to write to His Majesty the King daily, God save the King.