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Home » News » April 2016 » Birmingham artist captures 90 years of the Queen on one side of A3

Birmingham artist captures 90 years of the Queen on one side of A3

18 April 2016
Sanctuary Housing logo.

A Birmingham pensioner has spent 70 hours producing a hand-drawn card for the Queen on her 90th birthday.

Frank Campbell, 77, a resident at Sanctuary Housing’s Homelands retirement living scheme, created the A3 card on behalf of the resident’s committee at the scheme.

Recognising that the card would have to be something special to stand out, the committee approached Frank, who has spent the past three weeks producing a work of art to present to Her Majesty.

The Queen is depicted as an infant in the top left of the card and as she appears in the present day in the bottom right, with the crowning of her coronation in the centre.

All of the remaining space on the card however is carpeted with a montage of different events and landmarks that she has witnessed across her life, including the opening of the M1 motorway, the scaling of Everest, the rise of the Internet and the turn of the Millennium.

The number 90 is superimposed above the image as a whole, with the digits reaching out to touch nearly every scene on the card.

Nearly all of Homelands’ 50 residents have signed the decades-spanning card, which has been sent off to Her Majesty, care of the Earl and Countess of Wessex.

Several signatories are older than Her Majesty herself, with one resident – Beatrice ‘Sally’ Riodian – celebrating her 100th birthday later this year.

Frank said: “When I was approached by the committee, I spent a couple of days thinking about it and had the idea of drawing a path between the Queen as a young princess to where she is now.

“All the other scenes on the card – the first Times crossword, the moon landing – are scenes that are important to everyday people, her subjects.

“I’ve managed to build up a few fans here during my time at Homelands and they’ve been checking in to see how it’s progressing; it’s generated quite a bit of interest.”

Scheme manager Wendy Billings said: “The residents knew they wanted something unique to present to the Queen and this is a really well thought-out way of doing so.

“The magic of this card is not just that it covers the past 90 years, but the more you look at it, the more events and breakthroughs you see.”