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Queen reveals she relies on grandchildren for help with technology

Published 19/05/2016

The Queen attends a garden party at Buckingham Palace
The Queen attends a garden party at Buckingham Palace

The Queen has revealed that when it comes technology, she relies on the help of her grandchildren.

Like many grandmothers struggling to keep abreast in the digital age, the Queen told a guest at a garden party at Buckingham Palace that she required a helping hand on the computer.

Barbara Wilkins, from Southend-on-Sea, was invited to the Queen's second garden party of the year for her work with young children.

The 82-year-old, who is still busy running nursery schools, spoke to the Queen about how children had changed over the years.

"I said they are all digital these days, and instead of sitting at the dining room table having conversations like I did with my children, they are sitting on the settee with their teas on their knees and watching television."

Mrs Wilkins said the Queen agreed.

"She said she doesn't like them to be on computers all the time, they need social skills. She said she gets her grandchildren to help her out."

The Queen wore a Karl Ludwig mint green one button coat and a cerise silk dress, paired with a Philip Somerville hat adorned with a cerise flower for the party.

She carried an umbrella - which matched her mint outfit - but the weather held out for the event.

The Queen, 90, was accompanied by the Duke of Edinburgh, 94, who wore a top hat and tails for the event.

She also spoke to Annabelle Halsor, from Riyadh in Saudi Arabia, who works for the expatriate organisation Corona Worldwide.

Ms Halsor said the Queen "understood how difficult it is for women to live there".

"She said, 'I should imagine that's a tough place', and I said that well yes it is because women are pretty insignificant in Saudi Arabia. You're at the mercy of your male guardian.

"I find it challenging but of course with the charity Corona it's a marvellous support."

The Prince of Wales and Duchess of Cornwall were also at the party, along with the Princess Royal, Duke of Kent, Prince and Princess Michael of Kent and Princess Alexandra.

The Duchess of Cornwall wore a cream Bruce Oldfield dress and jacket with a Philip Treacy hat.

The party went ahead without any obvious hiccups despite the security breach at the Palace last night when a man scaled a perimeter wall.

Around 8,000 guests attended the garden party. Every summer the Queen hosts three garden parties at the Palace, where they have been held since the 1860s.

They took the place of debutantes in the 1950s but have evolved into a way of celebrating contributions to public service.

At a typical garden party, around 27,000 cups of tea, 20,000 sandwiches and 20,000 slices of cake are consumed.

The Duchess of Cornwall spoke to Nicky Russell and Vicky Tustian, from Thetford Forest on the Norfolk and Suffolk border, who work for the Forestry Commission.

They were representing the 7th Armoured Brigade, known as the Desert Rats, with whom the Duchess has a strong connection.

Her father, Major Bruce Shand, served with the Desert Rats during the Second World War. They showed the Duchess an aerial photograph of the forest which revealed the foundations of the Desert Rats' former base.

They said: "She was really keen to see the memorial continuing as the Desert Rats are getting quite aged now and she is keen for the memorial to continue."

The Duchess was also interested to see the photograph and surprised that the foundations were still there, they added.

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