A BARRY community champion experienced a right royal garden party recently and had a chance meeting with a king in the gardening world.

Susan Borges, of St Mary’s church, recently had tea and cake at one of the three garden parties the Queen hosts at Buckingham Palace every summer – and got to meet popular television gardener and presenter, Alan Titchmarsh..

Vale AM Jane Hutt nominated Susan, who is on the Barry Marie Curie Cancer Care fundraising committee and recently began volunteering for the Trussell Trust Food bank.

Susan said the royal invite came as a surprise in April.

She said: “The feeling was overwhelming to think that someone in the community, had felt that the work that I had done in the community worthy of such an invitation. I felt very humble and very excited!”

Her Majesty, the Queen attended wearing, Susan said, the same primrose Angela Kelly-designed outfit that she wore to Prince William’s wedding.

She also wore a frosted sunflower brooch with Queen Mary’s button earrings and a three strand pearl necklace.

Other family members in attendance were the Duke of Edinburgh, the Prince of Wales and Duchess of Cornwall, the Earl and Countess of Wessex and Princess Alexandra of Kent and many diplomats from around the world.

The Queen received the ambassadors of Bolivia and Liberia at Buckingham Palace the same day. (June 3)

Susan was also nominated for her St Mary’s church heating system appeal for £55,000 in September 2008.

Susan said: “By the end of February 2009, with the help of many generous people and grants, we had a new heating system installed. I continued to raise funds and support my church in many other ways and still do today. My work with Marie Curie Cancer Care, hopefully, also helped many people at one of the most vulnerable time of their lives.”

She added: “I had a fabulous day, met some wonderful people which also included a surprise meeting with Alun Titchmarsh, who is such a gentleman. It is an experience that I will always remember.”