Howgate man shows colour of his Maundy

John McCulloch with some of his Maundy money
John McCulloch with some of his Maundy money

The Clerk to Lothian Presbytery had the honour of receiving the Maundy Money from the Queen at a special Easter service in Windsor.

John McCulloch (79) from Howgate, attended the event with his wife Cicely.

He said: “It’s a huge honour. I was thrilled to have been chosen. In days gone by the monarch would dish out gifts to the poor and needy.

“It’s now given to people who have been chosen for services to their church or community. It seems therefore that my being nominated was in recognition of my having been Clerk to the Presbytery of Lothian for 22 years.

“The purses were carried by Yeomen of The Guard, Beefeaters to you and me, on large gold dishes and there was an amazingly elaborate passing of the purses by four men, one to the next, before they reached the hand of the Queen who then handed them to the Recipient.

“I will cherish the gift and both Cicely and I will forever have very fond memories of an extremely special day.”

The Maundy custom began in 1662.

The number of Recipients is the age of the Queen. So this year 90 male and 90 female Recipients were chosen.

The gifts themselves consisted of a small red leather purse containing a £5 coin commemorating the Queen’s 90th birthday, a 50p coin marking the 950th anniversary of the Battle of Hastings and a small white leather purse containing 90 special Maundy pence in pure silver in sets of 10p, in denominations of 4p, 3p, 2p and 1p.