Croston’s Kath Almond is invited to tea with the Queen at Buckingham Palace

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A key member of the Croston community was invited to a garden party with the Queen to acknowledge her devotion to the village.

Resident Kath Almond was invited to Her Majesty’s Garden Party at Buckingham Palace on June 1.

Kath Almond

Kath Almond

When Kath received her invitation well in advance of the honorary garden party in the post she had initially hoped to take her husband along but following ill health Jeff died in March aged 72 after 53 years of marriage.

“The invitation came out of the blue, and of course I accepted,” said Kath, who has lived in Croston all her life.

“I could take a guest, but my husband Jeff hadn’t been well, so I asked my sister Joan to accompany me.”

Commenting on the royal garden party Kath added: “It was a perfect day. Everyone there had made a special effort – it was like an endless fashion magazine – and not only the ladies. There were men in coloured suits, striped suits, coloured top hats and tail-coats.

“Afternoon tea was served from spotless tea tents. Crustless sandwiches and bite-size cakes on special trays. Brass bands played in bandstands, and we could wander round the garden and lake. When the afternoon became quite warm, waiters came round with tubs of frozen ice cream.

“The Queen came out led by her Beefeaters, in a powder blue hat and coat. She is so small, diminutive, and she walked all the way across the lawn to her special tea tent. It was such a privilege to be there.”

Kath was nominated to be invited to Her Majesty’s Garden Party by Chorley councillor Alan Whittaker (Chisnall) as he was aware of all the work she had done over the years for Croston.As chairman of the Flood Action Group Kath has been involved in the campaign to bring a permanent flood barrier to the village. She has been a member of the parish council since 2004, and was involved in the formation of the Parish Plan. She is a member of Friends of the River Yarrow, the group instrumental in creating fish-passes upstream of Croston.

Kath is a trustee of Croston Old School, Croston United Charities, and Peter Lathom’s Charity. She is also a member of Friends of Croston Station, a group of volunteers who transformed Croston Station. Kath founded Croston Community Archive, to preserve the history of the village for future generations. She is a member of Croston Carvers, a group formed in 2000 to carve the Millennium Stone, now by the village green, but who then went on to carve others now dotted around the village. She is also a member of the Croston in Bloom team.

Kath said: “Croston is a lovely village, surrounded by green fields, which we must protect at all cost.”

Kath comes from a family who have lived in Croston for generations.

Her grandfather, Tommy Dalton, was the village blacksmith, and her great great grandfather Sgt.Thomas Houghton was one of the first to be stationed at the police station in 1880.