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Last Updated: Monday, 13 October, 2003, 01:10 GMT 02:10 UK
Queen honours UK's pioneers
Rock reads:
One of the rocks thrown through palace windows by Suffragettes in 1914
Dozens of inventors and pioneers have been honoured at a reception at Buckingham Palace.

Trevor Baylis, inventor of the wind-up radio, and Sir Roger Bannister, the first man to run a mile in under four minutes, was among those on the guest list for Monday's night event.

The reception helped celebrate Britons who have made a significant contribution to society, said officials.

Guests were able to see a rare exhibition of royal archives - including two rocks thrown through Buckingham Palace windows by protesting Suffragettes in 1914.

Each of the three-inch rocks bears a slogan with one saying "Constitutional methods being ignored drive us to window smashing".

The windows were smashed six days after a deputation of women demanding the vote with a petition for the king was refused.

Most extraordinary
Queen Victoria, commenting on her first experience of the telephone
Also among the exhibits was Queen Victoria's intial response to Alexander Graham Bell's invention of the telephone.

Finding it "most extraordinary", she ordered one for herself, but did comment: "It is rather faint, and one must hold the tube close to one's ear".

Many famous names attended Monday's reception - including Delia Smith, Cliff Richard and Pete Waterman.

Ten Nobel prizewinners were also be guests of honour.

But lesser-known ground-breakers were also be celebrated, including the inventor of a non-spill children's beaker and a heart transplant surgeon.

The BBC's Anita McVeigh
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