Wigan great-grandmother with large collection of memorabilia shares her sadness at death of the Queen

A royal enthusiast from Wigan has spoken of her feelings about hearing news of the death of Queen Elizabeth II.

Jean Topping has a huge collection of royal memorabilia, including lots of mugs from across the Queen’s 70-year reign.

She remembered celebrating the Queen’s coronation in 1953 as a teenager and threw a party earlier this year to celebrate Her Majesty’s platinum jubilee.

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She shared her thoughts on hearing the news of the monarch’s death which marked the end of an era.

Jean ToppingJean Topping
Jean Topping
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Jean, who lives in the Orrell, spoke of her shock and grief at hearing that Britain’s longest-serving monarch had died on Thursday.

Jean, 88, said: “I had the news on all day. I was really upset about it, it was awful, heartbreaking. I was holding my breath when I heard about it.

“She was a good queen. Everybody liked her. She kept on to the last. I watched on the telly when she was with the new prime minister and I thought how well she had done.

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When I was in the paper for the platinum jubilee my daughter had it printed and it was on the dining room door. I only took it off yesterday, I don’t know what made me do that.”

Jean, who has five children, 10 grandchildren and great-grandchildren, spoke of how she identified with the Queen as a mother and a grandmother.

She said: “She’s got children, grandchildren and great-grandchildren like I have. She was a very nice lady. She was very happy with Prince Philip, she met him, got married and they had a nice family.

“I remember seeing her on the telly with her family at the seaside, with Prince Charles and Princess Anne, like an ordinary mother would do. I think she was a very good mother, looked after her children and enjoyed herself with them.

“She had a title but she was a proper mother to them.

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“They had Christmas parties just like we do. All my family come up after dinner and we have a buffet and play games. When we had lockdown and nobody was able to come down, they just came to the front gate and said hello, it was heartbreaking. I knew how the Queen must have felt.”