24th November 1947: Princess Elizabeth and The Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh enjoying a walk during their honeymoon at Broadlands, Romsey, Hampshire. © Getty Images
Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II and Prince Philip, The Duke of Edinburgh re-visit Broadlands, to mark their Diamond Wedding Anniversary on 20th November. © Getty Images
The Queen has passed underneath Admiralty Arch many a time but only once in her lifetime has Her Majesty actually been inside it. This was upon an invitation to lunch by Sir Jock Slater, the final First Sea Lord to occupy the official residence.
His Royal Highness Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh, provides an interesting connection to Admiralty Arch, for his uncle Lord Mountbatten of Burma served as First Sea Lord in the 1950s and occupied the official residence in the north wing. The Queen and Prince Philip started their honeymoon at Broadlands, the personal home of Lord Mountbatten and his wife Edwina, and they returned for The Queen’s Diamond Jubilee in 2012.
In recent years, Lord Mountbatten’s grandson and wife embarked on a redecoration and refurbishment of the main house at Broadlands. For this, they called on the services of David Mlinaric and Hugh Henry – the lead designers at Admiralty Arch. Because of the connection between Admiralty Arch and the Mountbatten family, David Mlinaric suggested that some rooms in the new hotel be named after ships under Lord Mountbatten’s command. ‘The Mountbatten Suite’ will have three rooms, called HMS Daring, HMS Illustrious and HMS Kelly, which will have views overlooking The Mall towards Buckingham Palace.
We should also pay tribute to Sir Aston Webb, the architect of Admiralty Arch and the wider Victoria Memorial scheme, who also remodelled the east façade of Buckingham Palace in 1913.
Crowds gather outside Buckingham Palace, the meeting place for Government and Irish delegates during the Home Rule Conference. © Getty Images