Royal wedding flowers donated to hospice patients

(CBS News) — In a number of ways, Prince Harry and Meghan Markle’s wedding is a gift to their nation that keeps on giving. In addition to directing would-be gift givers to seven charities of their choosing instead, it was just revealed that the Duke and Duchess of Sussex donated their nuptial flowers to the patients at St. Joseph’s Hospice in London.

“Our hospice smells and looks gorgeous,” a post from St. Joseph’s read on Facebook. “Such a lovely gesture.”

One of the patients at St. Joseph’s, Pauline Clayton, is no stranger to royal family weddings. As a 19-year-old, Clayton, now 89, worked for royal dressmaker Norman Hartnell and helped embroider the wedding dress of Queen Elizabeth II, according to the BBC. Clayton worked with three other girls, earning nearly 50 hours overtime on the dress’ train alone.

“I really liked working for the Queen Mother and I helped to make many of her dresses during my 20-year career with Norman,” she told the BBC. “With my royal connections it’s such a lovely coincidence to be at St. Joseph’s and receive these wedding flowers.”

The hospice has historically been a cause of royal patronage, dating back to its founding in 1905 with support from Queen Alexandra and Princess Victoria.

Prince Harry hand picked his bride’s bouquet himself, containing white roses and forget-me-nots from the private garden at Kensington Palace.

The flowers were favorites of the late Princess Diana, and the bouquet, in royal wedding tradition, was laid at Westminster Abbey’s famed grave of the unknown warrior. It has been a tradition since the marriage of Queen Elizabeth I and King George V.

The floral arrangements were designed by renowned London florist Philippa Craddock, a self described “preferred supplier” of flowers to Kensington Palace.

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