The Queen redefined leadership

LIVERPOOL, ENGLAND - MAY 17 2012: Her Royal Highness Queen Elizabeth II visits Liverpool Albert Dock during her Diamond Jubilee tour of Great Britain, Liverpool, England. May 17 2012
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A close up of Richard Branson smiling, looking at the camera
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Published on 8 September 2022

It is a very sad day as we say goodbye to Queen Elizabeth II, who has died aged 96. The Royal Family, and all whose lives the Queen brightened, are in all of our thoughts.

The Queen has been a constant presence in public life for nearly as long as I have been alive – I was two when she took the British throne. She lived a life of service, standing for the best of British values, providing grace and consistency in an ever-changing world.

I’ve had the pleasure of meeting The Queen many times over the years and I’ve always admired her strength of spirit and sense of duty. From attending royal gatherings to events celebrating entrepreneurship – the Queen always had such a dignified, stoic presence. She was extremely calm, very astute and a great listener – all excellent qualities in a leader. She also had a wonderful sense of humour and took a great interest in the people she met wherever she went.

he Queen Meets Richard Branson At An Airbus Factory In Toulouse During A State Visit To France.
Image by Mark Cuthbert / UK Press via Getty Images

We’ve been fortunate to get to know the wider Royal Family, hosting many of them at our home on Necker Island, from Princess Diana, Prince William and Prince Harry many years ago, through to her grandchildren more recently, and with our children having grown up as friends.

I know how much The Queen means to all of the Royal Family and how she was always such a wonderful guiding light to everyone who knew her.

The Queen led such an extraordinary life and redefined what it means to be a leader.