I don’t know what we were shouting as we flung ourselves against the gates of Buckingham Palace on 20 November 1947 – something ecstatic like maenads in the wake of Bacchus, certainly nothing critical. This was a demonstration of joy. My fellow maenad was my best friend from St Mary’s Convent in Ascot, Lucy, and we were 15, up from school. I would like to think we were wearing our New Look coats, mine an impractical pale turquoise, hers spinach green, sweeping to the floor and double-breasted to make us seem like a couple of Napoleons, if rather taller. However these coats were so totally precious, and none of our skirts were remotely the same length, so I rather think we were wearing our navy-blue school macs in order to be ready for the fray.