Queen presents Maundy money at service in Oxford

The BBC's Nicholas Witchell: "Tradition and service have long been at the heart of the Queen's reign"

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The Queen has presented coins to elderly people who have worked hard for their community at the Royal Maundy Service held in Oxford.

She was joined by the Duke of Edinburgh in Christ Church cathedral to distribute the coins in a tradition which dates back hundreds of years.

Eighty seven men and 87 women, to mark the Queen's 87th year, were given two purses of money, one red and one white.

Geoffrey Moss, from Ascot in Berkshire said: "It's a tremendous privilege."

Queen's coronation

The red purse contained a £5 coin and a 50p coin commemorating the 60th anniversary of the Queen's coronation in 1953.

The white purse held the famous Maundy money, silver one, two, three and four penny pieces equal to 87 pence.

Queen hands out Maundy money Eighty seven men and 87 women were handed Maundy money by The Queen

The retired recipients were recommended by clergy and ministers of all denominations in recognition of their service to the Church and the community in the diocese of Oxford.

Mr Moss, 74, said: "I was nominated for my general service to elderly people in the community.

"I help with Talking Newspapers, I'm a trustee for Age Concern and for the last 16 years I've helped my wife who runs a drop-in centre for the elderly in Ascot."

It is the first time in almost 400 years that the service has been held in Oxford.

Charles I was the last monarch to carry out the ceremony in the city in 1642 and 1643 when his court was established there during the Civil War.

Road closures in the area are in place until 1530 GMT.

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