A tower of strength on her Majesty’s Secret Service: The Queen thanks MI5’s Director General Andrew Parker – after thanking staff for ‘keeping our country safe’ on visit to agency’s HQ
- The Queen, 93, visited MI5’s headquarters at Thames House, London, today
- Monarch donned a warming plum-coloured ensemble for the outing
- The Queen delivered a speech thanking staff for ‘keeping our country safe’
The Queen thanked MI5 staff for ‘keeping our country safe’ during her first public visit to the intelligence agency.
Speaking at the headquarters at Thames House, London, the Queen, 93, said she is ‘always struck’ by their ‘remarkable resolve’ to carry out work ‘without public recognition’.
Sir Andrew Parker, MI5’s director general and head, gave the Queen a tour of the agency’s private museum and showed her artefacts relating to double agents who helped deceive the Nazis over the site of the Second World War D-Day landings.
The Queen thanked MI5 staff for ‘keeping our country safe’ during a visit to the headquarters in London today. Pictured, leaving Thames House with Director General Andrew Parker
The Queen, 93, delivered a speech, saying how she is ‘always struck’ by the ‘remarkable resolve’ of MI5 employees. Pictured, with Director General Andrew Parker after the visit
The monarch donned an elegant plum ensemble for the low-key outing to Thames House. She delivered a speech to staff before being escorted out by the Director General, pictured
Typically co-ordinated, the Queen plumped for a plum-coloured ensemble for the outing, wearing a vibrant coat over a floral dress and accessorising with a hat in the same shade.
She finished the outfit with her trusty handbag and black leather shoes, adding a pair of gloves to protect her hands from the cold.
Due to the sensitive nature of MI5’s work, cameras were not allowed inside to document the Queen’s speech. However a transcript was later shared online.
The Queen said in her speech: ‘I would like to take my visit here today as an opportunity to thank you all for the tireless work you do to keep our country safe.
Details of the visit are not known but a transcript of the Queen’s speech was shared on the Royal Family website. Pictured, the Queen after the event on Tuesday morning
The Queen leaving Thames House with Director General Andrew Parker following her visit
‘I am always struck by the remarkable resolve with which you carry out your vital role.
‘There will no doubt continue to be significant threats and challenges ahead.
‘But on each of my visits to MI5, I have been impressed by the way that you have adapted to the changing threats to our nation.
‘Whether responding to the threats from the Nazis or the Cold War, domestic terrorism or the cyber sphere, you have always demonstrated the utmost commitment to your motto Regnum Defende (defence of the realm).
‘Because of the nature of your work, it is without public recognition, so it is on behalf of the country that I say to you all, thank you.’
The visit comes after the Government moved to strongly deny claims that MI5 chiefs do not trust Home Secretary Priti Patel and were limiting intelligence sharing.