FORMER High Sheriff and Eton College’s imam spoke of the ‘great honour’ he had in meeting the Queen during the Diamond Jubilee celebrations.

Monawar Hussain told the Oxford Mail this evening: “I had the great honour of meeting the queen a few years back, during the Diamond Jubilee [2012].

“It was just a very special moment.

“I’d just come through a terrible illness and it was a real privilege to meet her.”

READ MORE: Oxfordshire reacts to death of Queen 

He had not long been appointed a Deputy Lieutenant, a ceremonial role under the Lord Lieutenant.

The imam, who established interfaith charity The Oxford Foundation, said: “I see Her Majesty the Queen as a gift from God to this nation.

“She’s served us with such distinction, faithfulness and with that sense of duty.

“It’s not an easy role. The way she has led the nation and the Commonwealth, striving to bring people together and lead by example by what it means to serve.

“We’ve seen the Queen as an example for us all, for how to serve – quietly, with great dignity.”

He added: “God chooses certain people for a certain role and purpose. That’s what she’s done for us. She’s done that for us as a nation and also the Commonwealth.”