ParliamentRoyal FamilySpeeches

Kevin Hollinrake – 2022 Tribute to HM Queen Elizabeth II

The tribute made by Kevin Hollinrake, the Conservative MP for Thirsk and Malton, in the House of Commons on 10 September 2022.

It is a great privilege, on behalf of myself, my family—my mum, as an adoring fan of the Queen and the royal family, would have been particularly proud—and my constituents, to pay tribute to Her Majesty the Queen and pay my respects to her family.

Sadly, we never truly appreciate what we have until it is gone and there is no finer illustration of that than the passing of Her Majesty the Queen. She has been such a constant presence that, throughout the inevitable peaks and valleys of life, it seemed she would always be there—a golden thread woven through each of our lives. She has, though, always been there for us, as strong and steadfast as her beloved highlands: seemingly faultless—I am sure she would argue with that—and infallible, but accepting, understanding and forgiving of fallibility.

The Queen was truly the best of us. She had an exceptional sense of public service, duty, responsibility and selflessness, combined with good humour, hope and optimism. She made us proud to be British, yet she was always humble, unassuming and deeply interested in everything and everyone around her. It was never about her. The finest tribute and greatest legacy that we could ever give is to follow her lead to be better versions of ourselves—more selfless, more charitable, more optimistic, more forgiving and less judgmental—in her memory. Perhaps it is understandable that we did not fully appreciate what we had, so now let us appreciate what we have. God bless her and God save the King.