Sat, 26 May 2018
A THATCHAM woman who was invited to the royal wedding has spoken of her “amazing, once-in-a-lifetime” day.
Jacqueline Scoins-Cass caught glimpses of the star-studded line-up for the wedding of Prince Harry and Meghan Markle at Windsor Castle.
The Thames Valley Kings founder received the royal invite for her voluntary work with the wheelchair basketball club, which started out as a Guiding project 14 years ago.
Mrs Scoins-Cass was one of only five volunteers in the county to receive an invitation from the Lord Lieutenant of Berkshire.
“It was truly amazing, it was really worth the early start,” she said. “It’s a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity.
“I was truly honoured to be invited. It was such a special day, so lovely and very traditional.
“It was just wonderful to see two people who very much care for each other in love and celebrating it with the world.”
Mrs Scoins-Cass said that arriving at Windsor Castle at 7.30am paid off as she and her father Dave Cass were able to secure a great spot in the Lower Ward.
There she caught glimpses of George Clooney, David and Victoria Beckham and James Corden – but there were no screens displaying the ceremony.
“We got to listen to the service,” she said.
“The atmosphere was amazing.
“A large cheer went up when Harry said his vows.
“Once the service had finished we were able to go into the chapel and look around.
“The smell of the flowers was just amazing. I understand that the flowers were taken down that night and given to hospices.
“We had to wait until half two to come out.
“People were still sat outside enjoying the celebrations.
“Just the sheer number of people meant you couldn’t rush through the crowd.”
Mrs Scoins-Cass said that she had caught up on the television highlights, but had not been able to watch the ceremony yet – because the Kings were in action the following day.
The Kings now have teams in British Wheelchair Basketball’s third and fourth division and were recently crowned South West Division Three champions.
Mrs Scoins-Cass’ husband, Peter Scoins, had to miss the wedding to take a Kings training session.
However, she was not alone in Windsor – she took a miniature version of club mascot Uncle Bob into the grounds.
Mrs Scoins-Cass said that she had met lovely people within the grounds, including an injured police officer and a woman from New Zealand whose son was singing in the choir.
“It was such a special event,” she said.
“It’s remarkable where volunteering can lead to. A lot of people were there for different reasons and things they had done.”
For more information about the Thames Valley Kings, visit www.berkshirewheelchairbasketball.co.uk/