Two members of TPS Connects have both attended a very special Royal event attended by Her Majesty the Queen.

After meeting with Alan Baird, previously Chief Social Work Adviser and explaining how TPS Connects and Connecting Citizens have helped both of them with their personal journeys, (the current Social Work Advisor to the Scottish Government, Jane Johnstone, was also involved). Craig and Collette later both received personal invitations to the Queen’s Garden Party!

When we caught up with Craig to hear all about the experience, he explained:

“It all started off as just a normal day volunteering with TPS Connects. The best thing about volunteering with TPS Connects is the opportunities that arise on a regular basis.

We had a visit at head office from Alan and his team. It was just a general chat about our personal journeys through TPS Connects and Connecting Citizens, nothing out of the normal.

Collette and I, must have made an impact that day, after the initial meeting and a few weeks had passed by, I came home from work to find an official letter at the door. My past experience with this was not good, previously I have had court summons, debt letters or fines, so this was quite a surprise to me. Alan and the team, had nominated myself and Colette for the Royal Garden Party at Holyrood Palace in Edinburgh.

At first, I even thought it might be a wind up, then a call from Colette confirmed that it wasn’t. I think we both opened our invitations at roughly the same time. It was quite an emotional moment when I saw what it was inside the envelope, for myself and my Mum who I was taking with me on the day and I am sure it was the same for Colette and her son Marc.

On the day, we were both quite nervous and sadly the weather wasn’t that good, it was wet and cold, but apart from that it was quite an interesting experience.

On the plus side, we were served with sandwiches with the crusts cut off and other bits and bobs, the chocolate cake was amazing!

The security was probably what I noticed first, it was very strict, even in the surrounding areas, there were armed guards on the roof scanning the area for the Queen’s and our safety.

When the Queen finally got around to where we were standing, I think she had had enough of the cold and damp weather, as she cut the walk short and headed into a large marquee to get herself a nice cuppa to warm her up, and I don’t blame her it was freezing!

Don’t get me wrong, it was an amazing experience, I just wish it was a nicer day for everyone who attended.”

We are delighted that Craig, Collette and their families enjoyed the day.