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Royal Marines band surprise school children at Queen’s 90th birthday celebrations

21 April 2016
Children at Solent Infant School in Farlington were treated to a performance fit for the Queen today when musicians from the Portsmouth-based Royal Marines Band paid them a surprise visit as part of the school’s special celebration to mark the Queen’s 90th Birthday.

A fanfare team of seven musicians from the world-renowned Royal Marines School of Music in Portsmouth took the pupils by complete surprise as they marched into the schools hall to perform a 45-second fanfare announcing the arrival of a very important guest at their celebration assembly.

The children, dressed in red, white and blue, clapped and cheered as their own Queen for the day – Year 2 teacher Mrs Russel – made a grand entrance.

The 270 pupils then spilled outside to create their own special memory of the Queen’s 90th Birthday by forming the letters EIIR on the playground for an aerial photo with the Royal Marines Band.

When we heard the school would be marking the Queen’s 90th Birthday with this special celebration we wanted to come and surprise them with the kind of fanfare we would play for Royalty.

Royal Marines Bandmaster, Warrant Officer Tim Carter

Royal Marines Bandmaster, Warrant Officer Tim Carter, who conducted the fanfare team said:

“When we heard the school would be marking the Queen’s 90th Birthday with this special celebration we wanted to come and surprise them with the kind of fanfare we would play for Royalty.

The Royal Marines Band has performed for the Royal Family on hundreds of occasions and it was fantastic to be able to share just a little glimpse of that with the children.”

The school has close links with the Royal Navy as 40 of its pupils come from service families.

Headteacher, Lucy Wilby said: “Today has been the most fantastic day for all of us here at Solent Infant School. It’s fabulous to be able to mark this special day in such a memorable way. Having the Royal Marines Band here as a surprise helped create an unforgettable experience that will stay with our children forever.”

Solent Infant School pupil, Beatrice Wright, 6 said: “If I met the Queen I would say Happy Birthday Your Majesty. We think the Queen is special and she’s a special person to our country.”

Year 1 pupil George Tickner, 6, said: “Today was pretty awesome! I had no idea the Royal Marines Band were coming. It’s really exciting.”

Pupils also made celebration crowns and enjoyed a street party style lunch.

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