A performance fit for the Queen
Above: (REAR l-r) Musician Henry Wray, Musician Kirsty Heard, Sergeant Lisa Keachie, Colour Sergeant Darren Pattison (FRONT l-r) Daisy Felstead (5), Betty Mavin (4), Finlay Hinton (4), Freya Scowen (6), Amy Felstead (5)
Children at Solent Infant School in Farlington were treated to a performance fit for the Queen today, as musicians from the Portsmouth-based Royal Marines Band paid them a surprise visit during the school’s special celebration to mark the monarch’s 90th Birthday.
A fanfare team of seven musicians from the world-renowned Royal Marines School of Music in Portsmouth took the pupils by complete surprise as they marched into the schools hall to perform a 45-second fanfare announcing the arrival of a very important guest at their celebration assembly.
The children, dressed in red, white and blue, clapped and cheered as their own Queen for the day – Year 2 teacher Mrs Russel – made a grand entrance.
The 270 pupils then spilled outside to create their own special memory of the Queen’s 90th Birthday by forming the letters EIIR on the playground for an aerial photo with the Royal Marines Band. Pupils also made celebration crowns and enjoyed a street party style lunch.
Royal Marines bandmaster warrant officer Tim Carter, who conducted the fanfare team, said: “When we heard the school would be marking the Queen’s 90th Birthday with this special celebration we wanted to come and surprise them with the kind of fanfare we would play for Royalty.
“The Royal Marines Band has performed for the Royal Family on hundreds of occasions and it was fantastic to be able to share just a little glimpse of that with the children.”
The school has close links with the Royal Navy as 40 of its pupils come from service families.
Headteacher Lucy Wilby said: “Today has been the most fantastic day for all of us here at Solent Infant School. It’s fabulous to be able to mark this special day in such a memorable way. Having the Royal Marines Band here as a surprise helped create an unforgettable experience that will stay with our children forever.”