Sunderland schoolboy receives letter from the Queen after telling her about his love for Penshaw Monument

Schoolboy Hugh Clinton has received a letter and card addressed from the Queen in which Her Majesty said she was “touched” and thanked him for his own “thoughtful” letter.

By Neil Fatkin
Friday, 1st April 2022, 11:38 am

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Hugh, 13, decided to write to the Queen to thank her for her time as monarch and express his excitement at her upcoming Platinum Jubilee.

He penned the letter after taking part in her Green Canopy tree planting initiative in recognition of the landmark event.

The initiative took place at Hugh’s school, the Harry Watts Academy, which provides education with a primary focus on autism, which Hugh has been diagnosed with.

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After being selected to plant the first tree and learning about the significance of the 70 year celebration, Hugh decided he wanted to write a personal letter to the Queen.

He said: “I thanked her for being a lovely and gracious Queen over the 70 years she has been on the throne. I really like the Queen and was sad when the Duke of Edinburgh died.

"I also wished her a happy Jubilee celebration.”

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Hugh Clinton, 13, holding his letter and card addressed from the Queen.

It was to Hugh’s surprise when he returned home from school last week to find a card, photograph and letter addressed from the Queen.

Hugh said: “I was really excited when I got my letter – it gave me a really warm feeling in my heart. It was amazing when I saw it and I started jumping about.”

The letter said: “The Queen wishes to thank you very much for your letter and for the kind message and photograph you sent on the occasion of the seventieth anniversary of Her Majesty’s Accession to the Throne. The Queen was pleased to hear from you at this time and to know how much you enjoyed the Queen’s Green Canopy tree planting ceremony at your school, Harry Watts Academy.

"Her Majesty is most grateful to you for writing as you did and thanks you for your thoughtfulness.”

Hugh Clinton's letter and card addressed from the Queen.

Within his letter, Hugh also told the Queen about his favourite landmark – Penshaw Monument. Hugh often joins his mother Julie and sisters Lyndsay and Vicky Martin in walking to the city’s highest point where the family have enjoyed sunset and sunrise picnics.

Hugh also likes to photograph the Monument, including this week when it was lit up gold in recognition of World Autism Acceptance week.

The family home is decorated in photographs, paintings and models of the iconic landmark including a six feet tall model of Penshaw Monument in Hugh’s garden.

Hugh Clinton, 13, wrote a letter to the Queen telling her about his love for Penshaw Monument.

He said: “I really love Penshaw Monument and told the Queen about it in my letter. You can see it from miles away and I really like it when it’s lit up.”

The letter addressed from the Queen replied: “Her Majesty was interested to learn of your appreciation of Penshaw Monument and was touched to know you are looking forward to further marking her Platinum Jubilee by attending the celebrations being held in Herrington Country Park.”

The card sent to Hugh also thanked him for his “kind message”.

Mother, Julie Martin, 56, said: “Hugh wanted to thank her for being a lovely, wonderful Queen and to tell her about the party we are going to have in our garden to celebrate the Jubilee. He loves Penshaw and wanted to tell the Queen all about it.”

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Hugh Clinton, 13, inside the giant Penshaw Monument model in his family's garden.

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Hugh Clinton's photograph of Penshaw Monument, illuminated gold to celebrate World Autism Acceptance week. Photograph: Hugh Clinton