Pearly babe D’Anna-Mae has cockney debut in East End boozer at 3 weeks

London’s youngest Pearly has made her appearance in an East End boozer for a charity cockney knees-up, at just three weeks old.

Little D’Anna-Mae Bruton isn’t much bigger than the peal buttons the Pearly kings and queens sew on their suits and dresses.

But the newest arrival to the Pearly tradition turned up at Bethnal Green’s Carpenters Arms on Sunday.

The ‘baby pearl’ was accompanied by her mum Nikki Boreland, 17, Pearly Queen of Stratford, and grandmother Lorraine Wells, Pearly Queen of Tower Hamlets, for a fundraiser for a children’s hospice.

“It was her mum’s first official engagement after giving birth and my daughter couldn’t leave the baby at home,” explained Lorraine.


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“So we brought D’Anna Mae along and she was good as gold—she slept through most of the shindig.”

They raised �600 for the Haven House hospice in Woodford with their cockney singalong and serving up traditional grub—pie’n’mash, cockles and jellied eels.

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“We didn’t do too bad what with the Olympics goin’ on,” Lorraine added. “The hospice gets overlooked and needs all the help it can get.”

That’s what the Pearlies have been doing since their costermonger founder Henry Croft, the original Pearly King of London, started the tradition in 1875.

It’s a tradition little D’Anna-Mae will follow herself in October when she’s officially made a Pearly princess—at three months.

Apart from her mum and granny, her great-grandmother Tricia Wells is the ‘Dowager Pearly Queen’ of Tower Hamlets, her great, great-grandfather was George Hitchings, late Pearly King of the City of London, and her great, great, great-grandfather was George Hitchings senior, first Pearly King of Dalston who sewed his pearl buttons in 1880.

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