Chester Decorative & Fine Arts Society

A Member Society of NADFAS

Visit to the Queen's Diamonds Exhibition

On 2nd October, 46 members made their way independently to Buckingham Palace to view the Queen’s Diamonds

The Queen gave permission for the collection of her personal and state jewels to be displayed as part of the Golden Jubilee celebrations.

Our tour commenced at 11.45am, the Palace was extremely busy but the well-oiled machine of "the firm" meant we were guided through with the minimum of delay. Everyone received an audio guide, which the least technical ladies of a certain age could operate. We glided through the magnificent staterooms towards the darkened and hushed atmosphere of the diamond exhibition.

Each piece or collection was displayed in clear beautifully lit cases, the first piece being Queen Victoria’s tiny crown, which she wore, in many iconic portraits. The tiara’s, necklaces, bracelets, brooches and swords were simply breathtaking, and took you on a journey through their history as the pieces have been handed down through the generations. The size of the diamonds and magnificent settings were truly spectacular, then came the most famous of all, the Cullinan Diamonds. This huge stone was cut and made into nine major pieces, seven of which were on display. Two stones are set in the coronation regalia, the largest in the crown; the other stones have been made into earrings, necklace and a ring.

After the tour there was an opportunity to lunch on the terrace overlooking the Palace gardens, and also purchase mementos of this very special occasion.

 The opportunity to view this unique collection, was very much apprecitated, thank you to Chairman Linda Hill for arranging the tickets.

Daphne Gulliver