Queen Mary in Gloucestershire

Royal protection during the Second World War

For most of the Second World War Queen Mary lived in Badminton House in Gloucestershire home of her niece the Duchess of Beaufort.

At that time Gloucestershire Constabulary was responsible for some of the duties linked to her protection.

Queen Mary Visiting St Michaels Church The Cross Gloucester. The lady in black is the Dowager Duchess of Badminton. Her Majesty’s personal protection AE Leakey holding the door for Chief Constable Colonel Henn. May 1942

The above photograph was bought on an internet auction site and the caption states that Sergeant Leakey was Her Majesty’s personal protection officer. At the time he was part of Special Branch  but from our records it is not clear whether his role was solely linked to the Queen or if it was part of his general duties.



The photograph below that has been in the Gloucestershire Police Archives for many years, states that Sergeant Gardner (with the temporary rank of Inspector) was Queen Mary’s personal police officer this is  backed up by his record of service.


Inspector George Gardner assisting Her Majesty Queen Mary on royal visit.
Inspector Gardner was seconded to Badminton House during the second world war as Queen Mary’s personal police officer.
(Gloucestershire Police Archives URN 800)



A report held in Inspector Gardner’s personnel file shows that he was awarded the Royal Victorian Medal. This is awarded for personal service to the Sovereign or Royal Family.



Even after some research the role of Sergeant Leakey within Queen Mary’s household  is not clear unless of course you know different.

This page was added on 16/12/2020.

Comments about this page

  • I remember Queen Mary visited Saul Lodge, the home of Sir Lionel Darell, in the 1940s while she stayed at Badminton. My sisters and I watched her go by in the car, as we lived just over the bridge in Frampton. Some local girls were in service there., and the story was the Queen picked up a chicken wing and nibbled it. We were rationed then, so she didn’t want to waste any!

    By Kath Martin (30/01/2023)

Add a comment about this page

Your email address will not be published.