Monday, 14 November 2011

Letter to the Queen on City Status.

There is a history of peasantry petitioning the ruling Monarch over pressing issues, usually at the front of a peasants revolt and usually ends in an execution or two!

"Well if Jack Cade and Watt Tyler can do it" I thought.
That's when I did something that was probably a little inadvisable and reached for my Laptop.

Mr Chris Sams,
XXX Sturdee Avenue,
ME7 2HG 
Tuesday 14th June
Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II,
Buckingham Palace,

If it pleases your Majesty,

            I am writing to you to plead the case for the reinstatement of city status to the Cathedral town of Rochester in Kent. As I am sure your Majesty knows Rochester has historically served the Crown and the Church loyally and with distinction and was a city from 1211 until 1998 when an administrative error occurred as the Medway towns formed the Medway Unitary Authority thus stripping this noble city of its status.

It is a grand old Cathedral city in a similar vein to Winchester and Canterbury with medieval streets and Victorian and Georgian shops set in a peaceful and picturesque high street and was once the home of Charles Dickens whose works are celebrated annually at the Dickens festival. 

As the seat of a Bishop who cares for an entire dioceses, which is the second oldest in England and stretches across a sizable area of Kent, it is deserving of the recognition of Cathedral city whether it fits current criteria for city status or not.

I beseech your Majesty to intervene on behalf of the city of Rochester and please name it on your jubilee year restoring this once noble city’s dignity. The people of Rochester would be eternally grateful to your Majesty for considering this most humble request.

  I have the honour to be, Ma’am, your Majesty’s most humble and obedient servant

And the response...

20th October 2011

Dear Mr. Sams,

        The Queen has asked me to thank you for your letter of the 14th June, and I apologise for the delay in replying, which is due to the high volume of mail recieved in recent weeks.

While careful note has been taken of the views you express concerning your wish to see Rochester reinstated to City Status, I must tell you that this is not a matter which The Queen would personally intervene or comment upon. As a constitutional Sovereign, Her Majesty acts on the advice of her ministers.

I am, therefore forwarding your letter to Constitutional Policy Branch, c/o strategic Communications, Cabinet Office, 3rd Floor, 22 Whitehall, London, SW1A 2WH, so that they may know of your comments.
                                                                      Yours sincerely
Mrs Sonia Bonici
Senior Correspondence Officer

Well it was indeed a long shot, and I cannot expect anymore and am thankful for what I have recieved from Her Majesty, indeed in a way I feel stupid for asking and wasting her valuable time.

I have, ofcourse, no illusions about the amount of attention that Whitehall will pay to the argument but here's hoping, not only for Rochester but also for the people of the Medway towns, so strongly do I feel the whole notion of the City of Medway.

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