Hunt on for royal triplets

  • Triple crown: the Queen meets the Miller triplets, Elizabeth, Philippa and Margaret, during her 1953 tour of Bermuda, shortly after she came to the throne. Nurse Cecilia Furbert, then 20, is in the middle  (File photograph)

    Triple crown: the Queen meets the Miller triplets, Elizabeth, Philippa and Margaret, during her 1953 tour of Bermuda, shortly after she came to the throne. Nurse Cecilia Furbert, then 20, is in the middle (File photograph)

  • Sixty-five years on: the Queen (File photograph by Kirsty Wigglesworth/AP)

    Sixty-five years on: the Queen (File photograph by Kirsty Wigglesworth/AP)


Triplets presented to the Queen when she visited Bermuda 65 years ago shortly after she was crowned are being hunted by a British broadcaster to mark the anniversary.

Little Elizabeth, Margaret and Philippa — the names of the Queen, her sister and the feminine form of her husband Philip’s name — and their nurses were introduced to a smiling monarch after she embarked on a world tour in the wake of her 1953 coronation.

Cecilia Furbert, now 85 and one of the nurses in a photograph, last reproduced in The Royal Gazette in 2009, remembered the royal visit well.

She said: “It was beautiful — just a short visit, but it was most exciting.”

Ms Furbert added: “I often wondered what happened to the children. Of course, they will be grown women by now.”

Ms Furbert is not alone — ITN’s 5 News in Britain has launched a search for the girls, who are now in their mid-sixties.

The British TV station contacted Ms Furbert as well as The Royal Gazette this month to try to track down the trio.

Ms Furbert, who married in 1955 and spent the next 30 years living in the United States, said she had no idea what had become of the three babies.

She said she had been “surprised” to get a call from British journalists who wanted to document the Queen’s 1953 visit.

The Queen was still Princess Elizabeth when she embarked on a tour of the Commonwealth in 1952, but had to return home on the death of her father, King George VI.

Queen Elizabeth II was crowned in June 1953 and set off on another royal tour five months later and, on this date in 1953, Bermuda was the first stop.

The Queen was accompanied by Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh, and with less than 24 hours to spend in Bermuda, the Royals had a lot to see.

They attended a parade in Hamilton, cruised the Great Sound and called on Parliament, with Alexander Hood, the Governor and his aide-de-camp.

The royal couple also visited a children’s hospital on Ireland Island, where the Miller triplets were already celebrities.

Ms Furbert said: “The triplets were brought in for care and three of us were chosen to have the babies in our arms.

“Each baby had a flag in her hand and she stopped to look at them. She went on to other parts of Somerset after that.”

Ms Furbert said the babies “did not need medical care — but three was a bit much for the parents at the time”.

She said she had forgotten the details of the parents after so many years.

But it is believed all three children still live in Bermuda.

Do you know details on the Miller triplets? E-mail jbell@royalgazette.com

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Published Nov 23, 2018 at 8:00 am (Updated Nov 23, 2018 at 2:36 pm)

Hunt on for royal triplets

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