Leanne Wood inclines her head as she meets the Queen for the first time and shakes her hand. In the ill-fitting red cardigan behind is the "Llywydd" (Speaker) of the Assembly Elin Jones. Neither wore hats

Leanne Wood inclines her head as she meets the Queen for the first time and shakes her hand. In the ill-fitting red cardigan behind is the “Llywydd” (Speaker) of the Assembly Elin Jones. Neither wore hats

One of the most closely-observed encounters at yesterday’s Royal opening of 5th National Assembly of Wales was the first meeting between the Queen and Plaid Cymru Leader Leanne Wood – former  Assembly Member for South Wales Central (which includes Penarth).

It so happened that Wood (44) , was the first in a line of AMs to meet the Queen and the Duke of Edinburgh as they entered the Assembly building.

She did not curtsey and made only  the briefest inclination of her head as she shook hands with the 90-year-old monarch.

In December 2004 Leanne Wood was thrown out of the Assembly Chamber during a debate when she repeatedly – and disparagingly – referred to the Queen as  “Mrs Windsor”.

The etiquette “bible” Debretts dictates that, when meeting the Queen, men should bow (from the neck not the waist) and women should curtsey.

The official advice on how to greet Royalty - from Debrett's

The official advice on how to greet Royalty – from Debrett’s

However it has been necessary for Wood to swear allegiance to the monarch in order to take her seat and be paid her salary.

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  1. AK says:

    Discourteous and ignorant.

    • Ron Foxton says:

      Absolutely. Ridiculous way for a 44yr old woman to behave, no matter what her political beliefs. Fortunately HM would just see the incident as petulant posturing by a minor politician of little to no significance…

      • whatsoccurin says:

        Agree with you about H.M-she and Prince Philip have seen it all over the years so I cannot see the evening chat at Buck House being about Leanne, or even “loads of PDN readers have been commenting on One!””. Far more likely to involve a few Earthy comments about Farage and Cameron’s TV show followed by a search for the George Formby C.D.!

      • Matt says:

        You certainly know your place. Why is the queen better than you? Handshake not good enough for her?

  2. Jillabong says:

    Why did Ms. Wood even meet the Queen if she was going to be so disrespectful. I have no problems with her views, which in a democratic country she is entitled to, but why lead a line to meet our wonderful monarch if she wasn’t prepared to follow protocol. Shame on her.

  3. Jane Foster says:

    And this is why she will never be taken seriously.

    • Matt says:

      I wasn’t aware that anyone took the queen seriously anyway, until I saw all these subservient comments.

  4. penarthblog says:

    Does it matter?

  5. Cathy says:


  6. Frank Evans says:

    She is just a common valleys girl. Every time she opens her mouth I cringe. I keep thinking I’ll bump into her on a hen do in Cardiff Bay. This is the nationalist face of Wales.

    • Louise C says:

      Maybe that’s why she’s so popular. The voters know a genuine person when they see one.

    • pompousfruit says:

      Her Rhondda accent is strong and pure but it’s not scraping the barrel unlike many accents I hear in the Valleys and Cardiff where children have grown up unable to talk and sound like they are speaking Klingon, hip hop speak or that awful amalgamation of the worst of Brummie, Scouse, Cockney, Tyneside and Leeds as that is what they hear on programmes like Waterloo Road and Grange Hill.

  7. whatsoccurin says:

    It was a very pleasant morning-I was outside with the “masses” and was amazed that soldiers were handing out “earplugs” in case people were startled by the 21 gun salute!-nanny state gone mad-the Debrett’s advice states that “a handshake is acceptable” when meeting the Queen. Leanne looked “First Ministerial” even though she is not,Carwyn looked like he was “chewing a wasp”, and speaker Elin Jones was obviously thinking “what have I let myself in for”?

    • Peter Church says:

      Leanne looked “First Ministerial” Haha!!!

      I would laugh if the Queen addressed Leanne in Welsh,.
      Leanne would reply; See I only speak valleys you know, I’s from Rhondda like, half n half, dim dim, mam?> Nice jacket that coat like>

      • whatsoccurin says:

        Don’t know if you are Welsh Peter (I am not) but times have changed-Wales has moved on-the is it? look you! days have gone-in my school days Welsh actor Talfryn Thomas or “Price” in Please sir! were our Welsh role models-those days have gone as well-Wales is now a much more positive nation, Cardiff is a European sporting capital-groups like Manic Street Preachers and Stereophonics are popular the world over-The Max Boyce “I am just a simple Welshman but I do love my Rugby” still raise a laugh but the humour is very much of the 1970s.

      • pompousfruit says:

        Leanne Wood is a Welsh learner so would speak academic or official Welsh not some strange Welsh dialect.

  8. sep says:

    Totally agree with AK.

  9. AK says:


  10. Isaydingdong says:

    Respect to Leanne Woods. Greedy Betty would have been more fitting to this unelected freeloader
    Debtretts can go and do one.

    • pompousfruit says:

      I agree. It’s too outdated for women and girls to have to curtsey when meeting the Queen. Debretts needs to be updated and the Royal Family needs to keep moving with the times.

  11. Isaydingdong says:

    Sycophantic bowing and scraping should be stopped in this day and age ! IMO

  12. Penileaks says:

    Off with her head !!!

  13. hopenotnasty says:

    I personally have the utmost respect for the Queen. Your comment on hats though is so dinosaur were now in the 21st century. Move on

  14. Cymry Llundain says:

    Well done Leanne! I think it’s illogical and ignorant to behave in a subservient and subordinate manner to another human being just because of the family they were born into.

  15. Christopher David says:

    Whilst I have some respect for the Queen who lucky in birth has never the less done the job excellently for a long time, we should end all this nonsense and make the Queen the last royal head of state. Whilst we at it get a few bob back from the rest like the useless Edward.

  16. L Thomas says:

    And how hypocritical to swear allegiance to get her salary, then follow it up by discourtesy when no financial remuneration was involved!

    • ColinD says:

      Spot on!!

    • Matt says:

      I have no idea what you’re trying to say. Leanne Wood is an elected representative in the Welsh Assembly; why should she have to swear allegiance to some random bint who belongs to the richest, over-privileged, and most corrupt bloodline in Europe? If a handshake is good enough for the rest of us then it’s good enough for the queen.

  17. Christopher David says:

    They swear allegiance with fingers crossed behind their backs. This should NOT be necessary – the people vote in politicians not the royals. To be fair to Wood who is feckless, she is at last one of the few honest ones. Doesn’t appear to fiddle and didn’t take the massive pay rise.

  18. M davies says:

    Ms wood knew what the etiquette was so if she didn’t want to adher to it she could have stayed away. Instead she embarressed herself and her party and the Welsh people

  19. The Tax payer says:

    If and AM,MP or Councillor says it Wednesday. Check you diary as you can’t trust any of them. Just out for what they get out of it and stuff the community £££££££ 😎

  20. Local Lurker says:

    “Plaid Cymru Leader Leanne Wood – who is Assembly Member for South Wales Central”

    Actually she’s AM for Rhondda after beating Leighton Andrews.

    Still awful etiquette though

  21. Dai Banjo says:

    Leanne is not a regional AM (inc Penarth) anymore. She is AM for Rhondda after beating Leighton Andrews in the last election.
    She is totally committed to the people of Wales. Her duties as Leader of the Opposition probably require her to meet the Queen. I’m guessing it not something she is bothered about, and would rather be getting on with more important matters.

    • pompousfruit says:

      Well commented. AM’s shouldn’t have to swear allegiance to the Queen and the Assembly shouldn’t be officially opened by the Queen after every Welsh election.

  22. Richard says:

    I wonder if she will put a picture up of the event in her house to show how proud she was to meet the Queen!

  23. AK says:

    Perhaps those who so vociferously object to HM would prefer a President. ?

    Who would they vote for ?

    President Bliar?
    President Boris ?
    President Kinnock?

    Please tell us

    • Cymry Llundain says:

      A president doesn’t have to be a former politician; they wouldn’t have any powers anyway.

      Our current head of state doesn’t have any real powers, costs an absolute fortune, is unelected, “rules by divine right”, and expects her “subjects” to be grovelling and subservient.

      It doesn’t matter who it is – it’s a ceremonial role.

      • AK says:

        Chancellor Charlotte Church has a certain alliteration about it.

        President Sir Tom Jones.

        The list of suitable non politicians is endless.

    • Isaydingdong says:

      Better still AK a Chancellor !! ooh that does sound good

  24. Andrew sarchus says:

    Typical Wales, something important happens and they’ll be two comments. Mention the royals or the Welsh language and its 50 shades of rhetoric. Who cares. Ahh yes- sycophants that think they may get a road sweepers gong one day.

Comments are closed.