The Queen is to have her very own flower market named after her in Paris; a very rare gesture by the French. The honour, bestowed to Her Majesty from the people of the French capital, will see a market very close to the Notre Dame Cathedral renamed Marche aux Fleurs- Reine Elizabeth II.
A spokesperson from the French Embassy commented: “This is a special honour from the people of Paris as it is very rare in France to name places after prominent figures during their lifetime”. The Queen will tour the market on the final day of her and the Duke of Edinburgh’s three day state visit to France.
Her Majesty and the Duke of Edinburgh will arrive in Paris on Thursday before travelling to Normandy for the 70th anniversary of the D Day Landings. Both The Queen and the Duke will take part in a commemorative event at the site of invasion of Europe by allied forces on 6th June 1944, meeting veterans and marking the sacrifices made by those who liberated the continent from Nazi control.
Ahead of the visit, British ambassador to France, Sir Peter Ricketts, stated: ” I personally think this visit is going to have a big, big impact on France. The sense I get here is real pride and excitement that The Queen is coming back for this visit. As you know she came here first back in 1948, as Princess Elizabeth, and many French people remember that and feel they’ve known The Queen ever since. This is a moment full of symbolism and full of history, The Queen has a very special relationship with France”.
The Queen and Prince Philip will be welcomed to the city of Paris by French President Francois Hollande and as they travel along the Champs Elysees in a limousine their route will be lined by 146 mounted members of the Republican Guard. Later, at a birthday party event held for The Queen at the ambassadors residence in Paris, British food and drink will be served to guests, who will include UK and France World War Two veterans.
A state banquet in The Queen’s honour will be held at the Elysees Palace on Friday evening before Her Majesty and the Duke begin their final day in France and tour the Marche aux Fleurs- Reine Elizabeth II.