Royalty and statesmen

Queen Fabiola had plenty of assistance from her numerous great-nieces and nephews as she set to work on the traditional task of blowing out the candles on her several birthday cakes
Photo: Getty Images
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A special guest at the tea party was Eleanore, the eight-week-old daughter of Crown Prince Philippe and his wife Mathilde
Photo: Getty Images

Kiddies make light work of candles at Belgian queen's tea party

4 JUNE 2008
Blowing out the candles on your 80th birthday cake must be quite a formidable task. Fortunately Queen Fabiola of Belgium had some little helpers in the form of the family's excited youngsters.

The royal dowager - who's the widow of the country's late King Baudoin and sister-in-law to the current sovereign Albert - remains a popular figure in the country for her warm nature and charity work.

And the family made sure her big day was extra special by gathering as many of the children as possible for a tea party in the octagenarian's honour.

Even the clan's youngest member, eight-week-old Eleanore, daughter of Albert's son and heir, Philippe and his wife Mathilde made an appearance, cradled contentedly in her mother's arms.