Page last updated at 13:29 GMT, Thursday, 9 April 2009 14:29 UK

Maundy Money handed out by Queen


The Maundy Money coins were specially-minted for the Queen to hand out at Bury St Edmunds Cathedral

A 107-year-old woman was among those who received specially-minted "Maundy Money" coins at an age-old Easter ceremony in Bury St Edmunds, Suffolk.

Kathleen Grimwood, of Sudbury, may have been the oldest recipient in history when given the money at St Edmundsbury Cathedral, Buckingham Palace said.

On Maundy Thursday each year the monarch gives coins to subjects in a tradition dating to the 13th Century.

The Queen now gives the money to people nominated for service to the community.

She gave coins to 83 women and 83 men during a service at the cathedral in Bury St Edmunds - one male and one female recipient for each year of her life.

Thousands watched

Each pensioner received a red purse containing a £5 coin celebrating the 500th anniversary of the accession of Henry VIII, and a 50p coin to celebrate the founding of Kew Gardens.

They were also given a white purse containing 83p in Maundy coins. All the coins have been minted in 2009.

The Queen and the Duke of Edinburgh chatted to locals during a walkabout following the service.

Thousands turned out to watch the monarch arrive amid tight security as large parts of the town centre were closed off.

Suffolk police said at least 220 officers and staff were involved in the operation.

A spokeswoman said the total bill for policing the visit would not be calculated until later.

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