A royal surprise
Husband and wife to meet the Queen
A couple from Dewsbury got the ‘surprise of their lives’ last month as what looked to be a simple letter in the post turned out to be an invite to one of the most prestigious places in the world.
Suleman Adam, known locally as ‘Solly’, and his wife, Maryam, have been included on a very exclusive guest list for a garden party at Buckingham Palace with Her Majesty the Queen.
Later this week, on Wednesday 20th May, the couple will head to the capital for a reception in the prestigious gardens from 4pm.
Lord Lieutenant of West Yorkshire, Ingrid Roscoe, put the couple’s names forward for the invitation and Solly explains how it all came as ‘one big shock’.
“I have worked all my life here in the UK and this is my country now,” he said. “I am very proud to call myself British.
“Coming from a poor village this is a big achievement but I have worked hard for it. I never expected anything in return, and certainly not something as huge as this, so I am really proud to have received the invite.
“So many people gather outside the gates of Buckingham Palace everyday to see what it is like so to go inside is amazing.”
Solly has lived in the UK for the past 52 years and currently runs his own car garage and sports shop in Dewsbury.
It is his passion for cricket that has helped him become a community champion in his own right, sponsoring local leagues and helping thousands of young players gain access to the game.
He has even helped the likes of the legendary Sachin Tendulkar, recommending him to Yorkshire back in 1991, and accommodating the world star in his own home during the visit.
“I played cricket for around 40 years and it has always been my ambition to get more people involved in the sport,” he added.
“For the last 14 or 15 years, I have sponsored the local cricket leagues and after helping so many, I have got one of the biggest honours in return with an invite to see the Queen.”
Solly and Maryam are now preparing for their visit to the home of British Royalty on Wednesday with a special dress even designed for Maryam by the couple’s long-time friend Mr Munaf.