Ronald Reagan 'ignored' British Queen's 'invitation to stay' at Windsor Castle
Former US President Ronald Reagan risked creating the 'worst possible impression' by ignoring an invitation from the British Queen to stay at Windsor Castle for over two months, it has emerged.
According to the recently revealed documents, the British Government wanted Reagan to use a Nato summit, expected to be held in London, for an official visit in June 1982.
The documents showed that former UK prime minister Margaret Thatcher and the Queen both sent formal invitations in December 1981, the Telegraph reports.
Two months later, no reply had been received, the documents said.
On February 5 1982, Britain's exasperated ambassador to Washington, Sir Nicholas Henderson, was summarily informed that America favoured holding the summit in Brussels and Reagan would not visit London at all.
He might, however, find time for Rome, Madrid and possibly Paris, the socuments said.
According to the paper, Henderson was clearly appalled, particularly as the files show that five days earlier he had received direct instructions from Lord Carrington, then Foreign Secretary, to secure Reagan's visit.
The ambassador told Michael Deaver, the president's deputy chief of staff, that the new plan would be the 'greatest mistake' and leave the 'worst possible impression on London'.