The Queen and Paddington: Royal Parks urge public not to leave marmalade sandwiches as tributes to protect wildlife
Founded in 2017, the Royal Parks is a charity that manages multiple open spaces across London: Hyde Park, The Green Park, Richmond Park, Greenwich Park, St James’s Park, Bushy Park and The Regent’s Park, and Kensington Gardens.
These venues have been used as locations for members of the public to pay tribute to the Queen after she passed away on September 8.
People from across the country have travelled to these parks to lay flowers, cards, teddy bears, gifts and even marmalade sandwiches in honour of Queen Elizabeth II.
There have been a surge of mourners leaving marmalade sandwiches, likely in response to The Queen’s parody with Paddington Bear during the Platinum Jubilee celebrations in June this year.
This response has prompted a response from the charity.
A spokesperson for The Royal Parks said: “Our priority at the moment is to manage the huge volume of flowers and tributes that are being left in The Green Park Floral Tribute Garden.
“We will work closely with our partners to agree the best course of action regarding any teddy bears and other artefacts that have been left and we will do so with discretion and sensitivity.
“We would prefer people didn’t bring marmalade sandwiches due to the wildlife.”
What can I bring as a tribute?
Royal Parks has informed that mourners can leave floral tributes at a dedicated site in The Green Park.
However, people are required to remove wrappings from their floral tributes and to consider removing the wrapping before they arrive. Bins will be provided for those unable to do it before they arrive.
Public are warned that any flowers left in the proximity of Buckingham Palace will be ‘sensitively moved at the end of each day’ to the Green Park tribute site.
Cards, labels and artefacts are also welcome as tributes and will be periodically removed by The Royal Parks’ staff and contractors for storage offsite.
You are welcome to bring a camera or your phone to take pictures of the site and tributes.
Tributes will be left on site until all ceremonial activity has occurred. It is thought that all floral tributes will be removed from park locations from 14 to 17 days after the date of the funeral on September 19.
Labels and cards will be split from flowers and stored. When flowers are removed, they will be taken to the Hyde Park nursery for processing to remove any packaging, cards and labels and to separate plant material for composting in nearby Kensington Gardens. This organic composted material will be used on shrubberies and landscaping projects across the Royal Parks.
What am I not allowed to bring as a tribute?
The Royal Parks urge visitors not to bring any non-floral objects/artefacts such as teddy bears or balloons.
It is not possible for visitors to light candles in the parks for obvious safety reasons. Lit candles will be extinguished and periodically removed.