Queen given bananas by the little girl the Queen Mother gave bananas to 60 years ago

In 1943, as Britain suffered at the height of WWII, the Queen Mother (then Queen Elizabeth) gave some bananas to a four year old girl named Betty. Due to rationing, bananas and other fruits were very rare in Britain at the time and most British children, including Betty, had never even seen a banana. Betty was in hospital suffering from shrapnel after a Luftwaffe bomb dropped near her home in London.

Today, the Queen Mother's daughter, the current Queen, visited the Queen Elizabeth Hospital in Kings Lynn, Norfolk, and Betty, now 69, presented her with some bananas...

Queen presented with bananas by the little girl the Queen Mother gave bananas to 60 years ago

24th January 2008
Daily Mail

The Queen was presented today with one of the most unexpected presents she's ever received on a royal visit - a pair of bananas.

A pensioner gave the strange gift to "return the compliment" for an act of kindness from the Queen Mother, who handed out the fruit to children at a hospital 65 years ago.

The bananas, which were a rarity in Britain in World War Two, were reported to have been sent to Princess Elizabeth and Princess Margaret, but the pair unselfishly decided to allow children in hospital to have their treats.

Betty gives the Queen a pair of bananas at the Queen Elizabeth Hospital, in Kings Lynn, today, repaying the kindness of the Queen Mother, who gave Betty the same gift when she was a four-year-old patient in Lewisham in 1943

Betty Hyde, who was four-years-old at the time, had never seen a banana when she was given the gift along with her three-year-old sister Pamela.

Today she presented a banana to Her Majesty as she toured the Queen Elizabeth Hospital, in King's Lynn, Norfolk.

The retired healthcare scientist said the gift was a way of saying thank you for a banana handed to her by the Queen Mother when she was four-years-old.

The Queen was amused by the unusual but heartwarming gift in Norfolk

The Queen Mother had given out fruit to children at a hospital in Lewisham, London, in February 1943.

Mrs Hyde was being treated for a shrapnel wound suffered when a bomb dropped near her home, in Hither Green, south London.

The pensioner, who was photographed receiving the banana in the national press at the time, said: "I remember the Queen Mother visiting the hospital and thought it would be nice to give a banana to the Queen as a way of returning the compliment and saying "thank you".

Due to wartime food rationing, four-year-old Betty, like many British children, had never seen a banana before. She was in hospital with her sister suffering from shrapnel wounds

"She said "thank you very much, that's very nice". I told her the story and she said that bananas were very rare in London at the time."

The Queen toured the hospital's radiology department today and spoke with patients and staff, before unveiling a plaque to mark her visit.

what a touching way to show thanks.

The queen is really looking old nowadays, eh?
Indeed. It's nice though, to see someone in the limelight aging gracefully.

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