Her Majesty continued her annual visit to the WI branch at West Newton village hall in Norfolk, despite the power cut, which meant there was no HEATING or LIGHTING. The Queen, dressed in a pink coat, joked that she was struggling to see the WI members in the dark village hall, whilst some of the women used their IPhone torches to light up the room.
The ladies all enjoyed cake and tea, despite the freezing temperatures in the village hall, whilst they listened to a speech by guest speaker, BBC reporter, Susie Fowler-Watt. The Queen later managed to sign the visitors book in the dark as the WI members struggled to pack up the cakes by torchlight.
Yvonne Brown, chairwoman of the Sandringham branch of the Women’s Institute, said: “You could say it has been very interesting. This morning the power went off at 06.11am and all through the morning we had information it would be on in an hour, so I took the decision we would go ahead regardless. I had calls with the house and the Queen’s private secretary said yes if we were happy to go ahead, then they were happy to go ahead. So Her Majesty valiantly came along to the WI this afternoon with no heating and no lighting and we were supplied with urns of water by the police to make the tea so we were actually able to provide everyone with a cup of tea The Queen came in and she was laughing and smiling with everybody and making remarks on the fact she couldn’t really see us because it was even darker in the hall than it was outside. We’ve had a really lovely afternoon despite no heat or light.
The Queen has attended the WI group's meetings since 1943 and took over as President from the Queen Mother, who in turn took over from Queen Mary. The local school was closed at lunchtime because there was no electricity.