The Queen opens Cambridge's new Papworth Hospital

Royal Papworth Hospital..Pic- Richard Marsham

Royal Papworth Hospital..Pic- Richard Marsham

Her Majesty made the comment during a visit to the National Institute of Agricultural Botany in Cambridge. The queen had been a visitor to the institute fifty years ago in 1969.

The organisation's chairman Jim Godfrey offered to help the Queen with planting, however, she declined his offer.

The Queen has told onlookers she is "still perfectly capable of planting a tree" at the age of 93.

Mr Godfrey seemed to laugh and then stepped back, leaving the Queen to pick up some of the soil with her spade and put it in the hole.

The Queen's recent outing comes just days after reports emerged suggesting she is passing on some of her royal duties as she takes steps to give up the throne.

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So much so, Prince Charles planted an entire forest shortly after Prince George was born.

Beginning her tour of the city at the National Institute of Agricultural Botany, the Queen, accompanied by the Duchess of Gloucester, viewed an exhibition celebrating 100 years of crop research.

Staff and schoolchildren from three primary schools - Trumpington Park Primary School, Pendragon Community Primary School in Papworth Everard and Stukeley Meadows in Huntingdon - greeted HM The Queen as she arrived at the hospital on Cambridge Biomedical Campus.

The new hospital building supports Royal Papworth staff to deliver excellent care to patients suffering from heart and lung disease, and includes five operating theatres, five catheter laboratories (for non-surgical procedures) and two hybrid theatres.

The renowned heart and lung hospital moved 16 miles (25km) from Papworth to Cambridge and welcomed its first patients in May.

There were loud cheers and applause as she unveiled a plaque in the hospital's main entrance to mark the formal opening.

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