'Right royal' play to decide Best of Britain Gold Cup title
MEMBERS of the royal family have been invited to Grafton to help Westlawn Finance defend their Jacaranda Gold Cup title.
Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II, Prince Charles and his wife Camilla Parker-Bowles (well, actors playing them) will be in the Clarence Valley and will celebrate Jacaranda Thursday with staff and excited locals today.
Westlawn Finance director David Ensbey said the special guests had been welcomed as part of the business's chosen theme this year, the Best of Britain.
Admitting he is quietly confident Westlawn Finance can win their sixth Jacaranda Gold Cup today, Mr Ensbey said the addition of the royal family would attract plenty of admiration from spectators.
"The Queen's corgis came out of quarantine today, just in time for Jacaranda Thursday and everyone at Westlawn Finance is sure our royal visitors will be regally received," he said.
"We always have a consensus to change our theme for Jacaranda Thursday and this year we are paying homage to our mother country and celebrating all things British. We are quietly confident of retaining the Jacaranda Gold Cup and it is an honour to have the Queen here for the festivities."
As Westlawn Finance staff get in touch with their British roots, Mr Ensbey confirmed the Queen and her family had settled happily in Grafton, although Prince Charles' wife was yet to acclimatise to the warm Aussie weather.
"She (Camilla) thinks it is too hot in Grafton," Mr Ensbey said.
Along with members of the royal family, British music legend Freddie Mercury of iconic band Queen and the Spice Girls will perform alongside up to 40 Westlawn Fin- ance staff today in their quest for a sixth cup.
The Jacaranda Gold Cup is awarded each year to the best decorated local business on Jacaranda Thursday.
Mr Ensbey said as the defending champions, Westlawn Finance, were taking the competition seriously although having plenty of fun was also an important part of the competition.
"The calibre of local acts grows stronger each year, but everyone always has a good time on Jacaranda Thursday," he said.
Westlawn Finance staff and their famous guests will perform four shows today at 8.30am, 9.30am, 10.30am and 11.30am.
A truck will be parked across Fitzroy St to accommodate the performers and a marquee and additional seating will be provided for spectators.
The winner of the Jacaranda Gold Cup will be announced at Market Square at noon.