Man ‘arrested in grounds of Buckingham Palace told staff he wanted to see Queen’

Connor Attridge allegedly walked through the vehicle gate of the Royal Mews on Sunday night when it was opened to allow through an authorised car.

31 May 2022

A man was arrested for allegedly trespassing in the grounds of Buckingham Palace days before the Platinum Jubilee celebrations after telling household staff: “I want to see the Queen,” a court has heard.

Connor Attridge, 28, allegedly walked through the vehicle gate of the Royal Mews on Sunday night when it was opened to allow through an authorised car.

He managed to breach the palace boundary by three to five metres after refusing to stop when challenged by a member of the household staff, Westminster Magistrates’ Court heard.

Attridge, who has a facial tattoo reading “truly blessed”, said: “I want to come in. I want to see the Queen,” before being ushered out of the gate and arrested, the court was told.

He appeared in the dock on Tuesday charged with trespassing on a protected site on May 29.

Attridge’s arrest comes amid heightened security around the palace in the run-up to the extended bank holiday to celebrate the Queen’s 70-year reign.

Troops of the Household Cavalry on The Mall during an early morning rehearsal ahead of Sunday’s Platinum Jubilee Pageant
Troops of the Household Cavalry on The Mall during an early morning rehearsal ahead of Sunday’s Platinum Jubilee Pageant (Dominic Lipinski/PA)

On June 2, Trooping the Colour, the sovereign’s official birthday parade, will kick-start the four days of festivities, with the expectation the Queen will join working members of the royal family on the Buckingham Palace balcony.

“This is one of the most high-profile weeks in history, with it being the 70th anniversary,” said prosecutor Leila Nahaboo-Osman.

She said the area where the defendant allegedly trespassed is “one of the most heavily guarded places in London”.

Daniel Mullin, defending, said his client suffers from mental health issues, did not use “stealth” and had “no motive or desire to go further than he did”, having allegedly breached the boundary by just metres.

“This was at worst reckless and at best bordering on an accidental offence,” he said.

District Judge Nina Tempia adjourned the case to June 28 for the Crown Prosecution Service to obtain consent from Attorney General Suella Braverman, which is required in cases involving trespass on a protected site.

She granted Attridge, from Eastbourne, East Sussex, bail with conditions, including a curfew monitored by electronic tag and exclusion from London, except to attend court.

The alleged incident is the latest involving the Royal Mews – which houses the royal family’s horses.

Earlier this year, American tourist Joseph Huang Kang, 24, was fined £200 after jumping over the fence into the Mews on the afternoon of December 10 last year in the midst of a psychotic episode.

Cameron Kalani, 44, scaled the fence in the early hours of May 10 last year and was caught with an 8in (20cm) kitchen knife and cocaine in his bag when he was arrested after climbing back into Buckingham Palace Road.

He was handed a 24-week prison sentence, suspended for 12 months, after pleading guilty to trespassing on a protected site, possession of a bladed article and possession of a wrap of cocaine.

Kalani said he had travelled to London from his home in Haywards Heath, West Sussex, while in a state of psychosis in a bid “to be arrested”.

Buckingham Palace has been contacted for comment.

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