Bear Grylls, the Polish ambassador to the UK, Piotr Wilczek, and CEO of the UK Health Security Agency Dame Jennifer Harries are just some of the guests in the Royal Box on the second day of the 2022 Wimbledon tournament.
The Royal Box, which is located on Centre Court at the legendary SW19 sports venue, has 74 seats reserved for the royal family and invited guests of the All England Lawn Tennis and Croquet Club (AELTC).
Wimbledon organisers handed out hundreds of free tickets to Ukrainian refugees in a bid to welcome them to their new homes last week.
In a couple of weeks, the special ticket holders will be able to spend the day at No.1 Court, an opportunity to see some “amazing tennis”, according to Wimbledon Foundation head Paige Murphy.
She said: “It’s an incredibly proud moment for us – it’s really part of our mission… to give people a really special experience after a really traumatic few months.
“To be able to provide a unique day when they can hopefully have a bit of respite and really get some enjoyment out of it is incredibly inspiring for us.”
Who is in the Royal Box?
Other attendees include figures from the worlds of academia, sports, business and the local community.
These include Caroline Cooper-Marbiah, the Labour Councillor for Colliers Wood in London, Councillor Joan Henry, the mayor of the London borough of Merton, and the Reverend Mandy Hodgson of St Mary’s Church, Wimbledon.
Sanjay Lobo, the CEO of Be On Hand, a platform to connect volunteers with older people seeking help, who was awarded an MBE in March for services to older people, is also in attendance.
Alison Oliver, the chief executive of Youth Sport Trust, is also a guest.
The Rt Hon Professor Lord Kakkar, Professor of Surgery at University College, the Rt Hon Lord Deighton, chairman of the Economist Group, and Sergio Oslé Varona, the president of the telecommunications giant Movistar, are also present.
Other guests inside Tuesday’s Royal Box include:
Syed Ahmed: Chair of Community Energy London
Reg Bamford: Croquet world champion
Diana Ifill: CEO Sustainable Merton
Julie Jackson: Managing director of Jackson Nugent Vintners
Professor Dame Sarah Springman: Former GB rower and triathlete, civil engineer and academic