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Land Army girls to meet the Queen

PUBLISHED: 15:47 08 October 2009 | UPDATED: 21:43 07 July 2010

THEY worked hard on the land while their husbands, sons, fathers and brothers were fighting in the war, and now three of the Norfolk women who gave so much for their country are being rewarded with a special tea with the Queen.

THEY worked hard on the land while their husbands, sons, fathers and brothers were fighting in the war, and now three of the Norfolk women who gave so much for their country are being rewarded with a special tea with the Queen.

Margaret King of Thetford, Peggie Cannam of Norwich and Frieda Feetham of Tasburgh will be visiting Buckingham Palace on October 21 after a lunchtime trip to the Royal Opera House in Covent Garden.

They will be joining about 200 other former members and friends of the Women's Land Army and Timber Corps to take tea in the ballroom of Buckingham Palace, and will be joined by The Queen, The Duke of Edinburgh and other members of the royal family.

Mrs King, 84, who worked at the Euston Estate in Thetford, said: “I am thrilled to pieces - it is every girl's dream to meet the Queen. I don't know whether or not I will get to speak to her, I expect it will just be a lucky one or two, but I would probably be too shy to say anything anyway, or say too much! I'm 11 months older than her.

“I expect we will go to one of the beautiful rooms and chat with the other ex-Land Army girls.

“I am not in very good health but I am praying to God that I can make it. A friend will be driving me and my husband, Joe, so hopefully we will be able to go. I am so happy my husband is able to go, because he is wonderful and does everything for me, and so it's a fantastic reward for him.”

Ms Cannam, 84, who was stationed in the Cotswolds during the war, said: “I am so excited. I went to the palace once as a member of the public, and it was absolutely awesome, but I've never seen the ballroom, and I think that will be even more splendid.

“Life goes on and can be quite boring, so it's nice to have a bright spot in the calendar and have something to look forward to.

“I will be taking a friend who worked in the Auxiliary Territorial Service in the war.”

Mrs Feetham was based around the village of Tibenham and milked cows, looked after pigs and did strenuous farm labour.

After the WLA's formation during the second world war and the 1940s, the then Princess Elizabeth met women from the Land Army on a number occasions with her father the king and Queen Elizabeth.

In recent decades, some members of the Land Army have felt they have been overlooked, but last year, 50 of them including eight from our region were presented with badges of honour by prime minister Gordon Brown during a ceremony in London.


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