Queen recognises work of senior aide

The Queen has made one of her most senior royal aides a Knight Commander of the Royal Victorian Order (RVO).

Vice Admiral Sir Tony Johnstone-Burt is Master of the Household, running a department responsible for everything involved in official and private entertaining across all the royal residences.

In a 2016 interview he praised the Queen, saying: “Her Majesty cares about people deeply.

“Often she will say to me, if I’ve got a personal issue, she will say, ‘Master, are you being kind?’ and I say, ‘Yes, of course Your Majesty’.”

The Queen
The Queen attended the ‘mini-Trooping’ ceremony flanked by Lieutenant Colonel Michael Vernon, left, and Vice Admiral Sir Tony Johnstone-Burt, right (Toby Melville/PA)

His team’s remit spans hospitality, catering and housekeeping arrangements and includes everyone from florists and upholsterers to specialist craftspeople and caterers.

Sir Tony is a former Royal Navy officer who served as a helicopter pilot in the Falklands War and later commanded a Type 23 frigate.

He is sometimes seen in public keeping a watchful eye at big events and was called into action when NHS fundraiser Captain Sir Tom Moore was knighted by the Queen in the summer, carrying the veteran’s Knight Bachelor insignia ahead of the ceremony.

Sir Tony was also present when a scaled down ceremony – dubbed a mini Trooping – was held in June to mark the Queen’s official birthday.

The Queen knighted Sir Tom Moore during a ceremony attended by the Master of the Household. Chris Jackson/PA Wire
The Queen knighted Captain Sir Tom Moore during a ceremony attended by the Master of the Household (Chris Jackson/PA)

Awards under the RVO are in the Queen’s gift and are bestowed independently of Downing Street to people who have served the monarch or the royal family in a personal way.

Also recognised were three women who serve as the Princess Royal’s Ladies-in-Waiting, who were all made Commanders of the RVO.

They were the Countess of Lichfield, Araminta Ritchie and Jane Holderness-Roddam.

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