The following is a speech given by Marco Longhi MP in the House of Commons on the death of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II.
Her Majesty the Queen has been a given in our lives, an anchor as certain as the sun setting each day. But her star has set for one final time, and there is no worldly scale big enough to show the weight of our loss. I, like many, felt that she would always be there. On behalf of my Dudley North constituents, I wish to express my sincere and deepest sympathies to His Majesty, the royal family and indeed the entirety of the royal household.
Her Majesty embodied everything we all aspire to stand for in this place: dedication to public service, dedication to family and dedication to people. The magnitude of what Her Majesty delivered in her time for us all is impossible to measure. While I never had the privilege of meeting her, I felt a presence there, a guiding hand, one that was available to us all—including Paddington Bear.
In Dudley North, I mourn alongside my constituents, a community united in grief. Her Majesty first visited Dudley in 1957, as a relatively new monarch, to view the beautiful Coronation Gardens dedicated to her. Coincidentally, my constituency office overlooks them, so I will always have a physical reminder to follow her example of dedication and public service.
Fast-forward some decades to the 1970s, but ultimately the 1990s, and Her Majesty found herself in Dudley once again, although a little higher in altitude, at Dudley castle and zoo—which made her the first monarch to visit the castle since her namesake Elizabeth I in 1575. Her Majesty was given a tour of the centre before unveiling a piece of commemorative glass and receiving a crystal key to the castle as a gift from the borough. Many of the messages that I have received are from constituents reminiscing about her visit. It is clear that she left a lasting impression; what is also clear is that when God made our Queen, He broke the mould.
We will all take comfort in coming together to remember the guiding light Her Majesty has been to us all. Long live the King.