queen with natasha
GOLDEN girl Natasha Baker gave the Queen a run for her money in the jewellery stakes when she was made an MBE by the monarch.
The double Paralympic dressage champion from Cowley arrived at Buckingham Palace on Wednesday last week with a walking stick adorned with 2,500 Swarovski gems, specially made for the occasion.
The 22-year-old horse rider, who suffers from a condition which caused permanent nerve damage in her spine, said the investiture experience was ‘mind-blowing’.
Natasha told the Gazette: “What has happened to me in the months since the Paralympics has been amazing, I can’t quite believe it.
“I went to the palace with my parents and my nan and decided to get the special walking stick, as I love a bit of bling. It looked amazing. A friend of mine who is a fashion designer, Jonathon Parsons, designed my dress, which I thought looked stunning.
“I was very nervous about meeting the Queen, but I know she loves her horses, so I knew that we had something in common.
“When I went up to receive my MBE, she asked me about my horses and what I have been up to since the games and what competitions I have coming up.
“Afterwards, 11 of us went out for a meal at The Crazy Bear in Beaconsfield. It was a very special day.”
It is the latest in a long line of accolades. She has become the first female freeman of the Borough of Hillingdon, got her own golden postbox and plaque in Uxbridge High Street and has been immortalised on a stamp.