Titles of honoured guests, ladies and gentlemen or fellow citizens.
Today I feel like a runner in a relay race. The old Queen has handed me her baton and I am now going to pass it on to our new one. It is a time for thanks and for memories as well as a time for hopes for the future.
What we are doing today is celebrating community and what it means in our lives. Today we are celebrating the fact that we have made new friends, had different experiences and hopefully, made a difference. Our parades might not impress the guards outside the White house or Buckingham palace but if they brought a smile to a child’s face then they were worthwhile. We are, you see, about people and what they should mean to each other.
We live in a busy world and one where community is almost a forgotten word. Yet we all need to be a part of a community. We all need to belong to each other. We need people in our lives, who understand our concerns and share them. We need to get this message across to others and that is why choosing a royal family is so important. They represent us as ambassadors for community living.
Today I want to thank all those who have made the last year possible. Their hard work and contributions have ensured that we, as a court, have visited many places, met many people and hopefully, left a very good impression behind. We hope you will feel that we have done you proud.
Today is rather like a birthday. It is a day for looking back over the past while also looking forward to the future. It is a day to remember the jokes and the laughter that we shared. It is a day when we remember people we met and events at which we were present. It is also, though, a day when in welcoming a new Queen and her court we also welcome the future.
Every Queen is different and brings different qualities to her role. Some will be cheery and full of fun while others will be more thoughtful and perhaps think more about the purpose of her coronation. All of them know, though, the importance of what they are undertaking. They know that (Name of town/district) relies on them to speak out for our concerns and our convictions. That is why we are so careful in choosing her.
Today then I welcome our new Queen and her court. I know that they will add elegance to their role and that they will be both committed and caring. I hope they enjoy themselves as much as I did. I can wish them nothing better. To our Queen I say, “Enjoy yourself, the best is yet to come.”