Australian grandmother hopes the Queen will have an unforgettable jubilee

NULKABA, Australia, May 23 (Reuters) – Jan Hugo never fulfilled her childhood dream of becoming a princess. She has therefore become Australia’s queen of royal memorabilia with more than 10,000 pieces, a collection she plans to grow as Queen Elizabeth marks her platinum jubilee next month. .

“Your Majesty, if you are watching, I hope you have a wonderful celebration for your Jubilee and I hope you have many, many more years as Queen because we all love you,” Hugo said in his living room. at Nulkaba, about 120 km (75 miles) north of Sydney.

Beginning in 1981 with a commemorative coin celebrating the wedding of Prince Charles and Diana, Hugo now has Australia’s largest collection of royal memorabilia. Queen Elizabeth occupies most of the collection with more than 2,500 pieces dedicated to her.

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Portraits of members of Britain’s royal family appear on all manner of porcelain plates, cups, teapots and coasters that fill cupboards around Hugo’s home, alongside plastic mannequins and figurines of the queen and her corgis.

Now retired from her retail job and spending time caring for her grandchildren, Hugo said she admired the Queen’s work ethic.

“She just did a wonderful job. How many people do you know (who have) been in the same job for over 70 years and had to perform a duty every day? Like, I think they said there were only a few days out of those 70s where she was too sick to do anything,” Hugo said of the Queen.

Hugo met Prince William – his favorite royal – and Duchess of Cambridge Catherine when they were in Australia, as well as Prince Charles and Duchess of Cornwall Camilla.

But she never met the Queen, missing one of her visits to Australia because she couldn’t make time as a young working mother.

When asked what his family thought of his collection, Hugo replied that his sons-in-law thought it “should be locked away somewhere”.

“Girls just say ‘oh no, we don’t want to deal with this when you die’,” she said.

“But when we have special events and things, they like to see what happens, and the grandkids picked out all of their pieces to keep when I fell off the perch.”

Queen Elizabeth celebrated seven decades as queen in February, and four days of “Platinum Jubilee” events to recognize this landmark are taking place in London from June 2. read more

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Reporting by Stefica Nicol Bikes; Written by Stephen Coates; Editing by Michael Perry

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