Rain coats – by Royal Appointment!

Violet Grubb
Violet Grubb

Working in the care industry, staff at Radis Community Care are doing incredible things for other people on a daily basis but not many people can boast that they have worked for the Queen.


Violet Grubb lives at Oak Tree House in Reading – an extra care facility where Radis Community Care delivers round the clock support to those who need it.


We have been providing support for Mrs Grubb for several years and she loves to tell us about her time working for the clothing designer Burburry, in particular about how she used to make rain macs for the Queen and possibly the Queen Mother!



Mrs Grubb was just 16 when she started as a seamstress for Burburry on Mill Lane in Reading, working on the machines and sewing ladies rain coats – she told us:


‘When I first started, I was simply taught on how to sew in straight lines and I stayed in that department until I was 17, at which point, I was transferred to another area which made special parts for the raincoats – like collars, pockets etc.


I remember these parts came in bundles and they had to be sewed together to make the finished raincoat.


One day I found out the coats I was making were actually raincoats for the Queen and I think also for the Queen Mother! I remember rushing home that evening and telling my parents.’


Mrs Grubb was able to use her professional skills in all areas of her life including making clothes, toys and pictures for her children – she even made their wedding outfits and bridesmaids dresses.


Lesley Whyte is the Extra Care Branch Manager for Radis at Oak Tree House, she told us:


‘Violet is such a character and speaks with such fondness about her time at Burberry, we all love to hear her tales.  There aren’t many people who can claim to have made clothes for the royal family.  She has even made pictures that she has hanging in her flat and her work is very impressive – fit for a Queen, you might say!’


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