Queen's cousin Lady Mary Colman dies aged 88 at her Norfolk home

Queen’s cousin Lady Mary Colman who was a regular guest at Balmoral and Sandringham and a former lady-in-waiting to Princess Alexandra dies aged 88 at her Norfolk home

  • Lady Mary Colman was the Queen’s maternal cousin and wife of Sir Timothy Colman, a member of the world famous Colman Mustard family
  • Couple lived at Bixley Manor and often guests at Sandringham and Balmoral 
  • Was daughter of Captain Michael Bowes Lyon and Elizabeth Margaret Cator, of Woodbastwick, and was the twin sister of Lady Patricia Bowes Lyon

The Queen’s maternal cousin Lady Mary Colman, who was a regular guest at Balmoral and Sandringham, has died at the age of 88.

Lady Mary passed away at her Norfolk home, Bixley Manor, which she shared with husband Sir Timothy Colman, on Saturday, January 2. 

She was related to the Queen through the Queen Mother as the daughter of Captain Michael Bowes-Lyon and Elizabeth Margaret Cator. 

Lady Mary was the twin sister of Lady Patricia Bowes Lyon – later Tettley – and sister to Fergus, the 17th Earl of Strathmore and Kinghorne and to the Honorable Albermarle Bowes Lyon. 

The Queen’s maternal cousin Lady Mary Colman, who was a regular guest at Balmoral and Sandringham, has died at the age of 88. Pictured with Her Majesty on their way to church in Sandringham in January 2013

Captain Bowes-Lyon, who served in the Army, was one of the four brothers of the Queen Mother. 

Tributes have poured in since the news of Lady Mary’s passing, with her family adding she was ‘loved by all who met her’.

Businessman Sir Timothy is a member of the world famous Colman Mustard family.  

Lady Mary grew up in Bedfordshire and was educated at Hatherop Castle in Gloucestershire.

She married Sir Timothy in 1951, aged 19, at St Bartholomew-the-Great at Smithfields in London. The Queen, the Queen Mother and Princess Margaret were all guests of honour. 

Lady Mary was related to the Queen through the Queen Mother (pictured together) as the daughter of Captain Michael Bowes-Lyon and Elizabeth Margaret Cator

Their early married life was spent in Dorset; Sir Timothy served in the Royal Navy at Portland, and went on to become Lord Lieutenant of Norfolk for over 25 years.  

They moved to Bixley Manor in 1953. The couple had five children together; sons James and Matthew and daughters, Sabrina, Emma and Sarah, who is currently the Lord Lieutenant of Wiltshire. They also have 10 grandchildren and 16 great-grandchildren.

In 1970, Lady Mary was created an extra lady-in-waiting to another cousin of the Queen, Princess Alexandra.

She became president of the EDP’s We Care 2000 Appeal, while Sir Timothy had been chairman of Eastern Counties Newspaper Group (now Archant). 

That appeal set up the Norfolk Millennium Trust which aimed to improve the quality of life for thousands of carers who looked after loved ones in Norfolk.

Tributes have poured in since the news of Lady Mary’s passing, with her family adding she was ‘loved by all who met her’. Pictured with Prince Charles in August 2002 at a memorial service for the Queen Mother

Lady Mary was full of praise for people who served as carers, often unpaid, saying at the time: ‘I have agreed to become president of the appeal because I firmly believe that carers of all ages – and many are quite small children – need and deserve all the help we can give them.

‘There are times when the sense of responsibility, loneliness, frustration or sheer exhaustion makes their task almost too much to cope with.’ 

Lady Mary served several other local charities including the Red Cross, and was president of the Norfolk Autistic Society for 26 years until she retired in 2001.

For many years she also ran a small dried flower business with three friends, called Flora Desicca. She was also musically gifted and played the piano by ear.

Lady Mary married Sir Timothy Colman (pictured together) in 1951, aged 19, at St Bartholomew-the-Great at Smithfields in London. The Queen, the Queen Mother and Princess Margaret were all guests of honour

Like the Queen, Lady Mary deeply loved dogs and spent much of her adult life in the company of Jack Russell Terriers.

Lady Mary was an avid fan of Norwich City Football Club and cheered on The Canaries at their home games for 30 years.

Her family said she she adored Norwich Cathedral, and those that worked there, including the bishops, deans and organists, reports Norwich Evening News. 

They added she was ‘hugely supportive’ of her husband throughout his working life. 

Sir Timothy was one of the founders of the University of East Anglia. He also held the  World Speed Sailing Record for seven years. 

Source: Read Full Article