‘The Fish Are Having Their Revenge’ ~ The Queen Mother

HM The Queen Mother, taken by Lord Snowdon in 1997. Is that a fishing hat?

We’ve already talked about Princess Diana’s lack of prowess with a fishing rod, so let’s move on to a royal who was a real expert at angling: Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth the Queen Mother.

Who doesn’t love the Queen Mum? She famously gave just one interview in her life; the only occasion was an impromptu interview in 1923 during her engagement when she was Lady Elizabeth Bowes-Lyon. The Queen Mum definitely believed in “less is more” in maintaining a royal mystique and refused to do any more after that but she still left us with many ‘bon mots.’ We’ll get to one of our favourite in a moment.

The Queen Mother loved to fish and was an adept fly fisherman. As is the royal way, her interest in fishing led her to become the patron of the Salmon  and Trout Association which focuses on salmon and trout conservation. She would fish along the banks of the River Dee in Scotland when staying at Balmoral and she also enjoyed fishing for trout at the lochs that surrounded the Castle of Mey in Scotland. The Queen Mum bought the castle in 1952, shortly after her husband died and it become a great refuge for her. Here’s a look of the Queen Mum in front of her castle:

A humble abode, really. Some might call it a fishing lodge.

The Queen Mum fished for years, and one of our favourite tales of her fishing is when a fellow angler realized that she was sharing the river with none other than the mother of the Queen. The lady instantly went to curtsy, and of course her boots filed with water and she got extremely wet. No doubt the Queen Mum had a discreet chuckle over that.

She certainly showed her sense of humour in May 1993.  That month, while staying at Balmoral, the Queen Mum was enjoying a fish dinner when a bone lodged in her throat and she began to choke. Her Majesty was rushed into emergency surgery at the nearby Aberdeen Royal Infirmary to remove the bone. After the succesful surgery she remarked:

After all these years, the fish are having their revenge.’ What a lady!


Categories: British Royal Family

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