A priest had explained to her how nuns at the monastery prayed 'for the Queen and England'

A priest who was invited to a reception at Buckingham Palace has said the Queen asked him to convey her thanks to the Tyburn Nuns after learning that they prayed for her.

Fr Patrick Cope, a prison chaplain based at the Ministry of Justice prison headquarters, said he told the Queen he was also chaplain to London’s Tyburn Convent. He explained that the nuns had a plaque entitled: “For the Queen and England” at one of the main altar candles.

The Queen “showed great interest”, he said, and asked him to “convey her thanks to the nuns for their prayers and her greetings”.

Fr Cope had been invited to Buckingham Palace in recognition of his role as a prison chaplain and as a fellow of the Winston Churchill Memorial Trust.

The Tyburn Nuns are contemplative Benedictines. They have had a presence in Marble Arch, west London, for over a century. The site is where 105 canonised and beatified Catholics were martyred at the Tyburn gallows during the Reformation.