Curtsey class: Girls show Gillard how it's done

Friday, October 21, 2011
Curtsey class: Girls show Julia Gillard how it's done
Queen Elizabeth meets Arabella and Lily Haskins in Canberra yesterday.

Julia Gillard has twice refused to curtsey to Queen Elizabeth but Queanbeyan schoolgirls Arabella and Lily Haskins delighted in the formality in Canberra yesterday.

Arabella, nine, and Lily, six, were chosen to greet the queen as she stepped off her barge on her way to visit Floriade.

As the queen approached, both girls dipped into textbook curtseys, before presenting the monarch with flowers and a gift.

In pictures: Queen Elizabeth's visit to Australia

The sisters had been chosen to meet the queen because of Arabella's heroic actions earlier this year.

The nine-year-old was jumping on the trampoline with her little sister when Lily suffered a cardiac arrest. Arabella kept her cool and felt for Lily's pulse before alerting their parents.

The girls' father Andrew resuscitated Lily and she was airlifted to hospital in Sydney where she remained in a coma for several weeks. She has since been diagnosed with a heart condition and made a miraculous recovered.

After all that drama, the girls took meeting the queen and Prince Philip in their stride.

"I thought they were really nice people," Arabella said. "I think the queen was really pretty and I liked the colour of her dress."

In pictures: Previous royal visits to Australia

The Haskins family are ambassadors for the Heart Foundation.

Your say: Do you think Julia Gillard should have curtsied for the queen?

Video: Queen visits Floriade

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