Australian of the Year Dylan Alcott makes the queen laugh in a sweet video call

In a newly released video from Buckingham Palace, the monarch was introduced to Alcott during a conversation held on the eve of the central weekend on the occasion of the platinum jubilee.

The Queen also spoke with Senior Australian of the Year Val Dempsey, Young Australian of the Year Dr Daniel Nour and local hero Shanna Whan.

Queen Elizabeth II shared laughter with Australian of the Year Dylan Alcot.
Alcotta was first introduced to the Queen by Governor General David Hurley. (Buckingham Palace)

Alcotta was first introduced by Governor General David Hurley.

“Hello, Your Majesty, thank you for coming to talk to us, this is great,” Alcott began.

“My name is Dylan Alcott and I still can’t believe it, but I’ve been named Australian of the Year for this year, which is just ridiculous. It’s a great honor.”

“I’m a proud Australian, I think you see I’m in a wheelchair.”

Alcott told the Queen that he has been in a wheelchair all his life and has achieved success in wheelchair tennis and wheelchair basketball.

“I was very lucky to win four Paralympic gold medals,” he said.

“(I) I won 15 Grand Slam titles in the individual competition by playing wheelchair tennis.

This undated video, released by Buckingham Palace on Saturday, June 4, 2022, shows Queen Elizabeth II in a video call with the winners of the Australian Awards of the Year held on the eve of the Platinum Jubilee Central Weekend in London.  (Buckingham Palace via AP)
Queen Elizabeth II laughed with the Australian athlete. (AP)

He then said that “unfortunately, he won several titles at Wimbledon, beat some British players, which is why I was happy, but maybe you were not happy either.”

This comment made the 96-year-old laugh.

Alcott then told the monarch that the reason he gets out of bed every day is “to change perceptions” so that people living with disabilities can “go out and live the lives they deserve”.

In addition to sports work as Australian of the Year, he runs the Dylan Alcott Foundation and shares stories of people with disabilities on the ListenABLE podcast.

“I just want to use my platform to shed light on that in order to help employment opportunities, help people come out and live the lives they want to live,” he said.

“To be honest, when I’m honored to be Australian of the Year, I get emotional when I talk about it.

“When I was little, I hated myself, Your Majesty.

The superstar party in front of the palace celebrates the platinum jubilee

“If I thought anyone in a wheelchair, let alone me, would be Australian of the Year, I wouldn’t believe you. (It’s) an honor.”

Alcott said she “cried” when he told his mother he had a chance to meet the Queen.

“How cool is that?” he said, a reaction that seemed to surprise the monarch.

“I think I made her very proud too. It’s a real honor to be here today, thank you.”

The Queen then clarified that Alcott had actually withdrawn from tennis, and his response received another giggle from Her Majesty.

“I’m retired now,” he said. “I’m looking forward to coming to Wimbledon and this time actually drinking Pimm’s, instead of playing all the time, you know what I mean? It’s going to be fun.”

Australian Open 2022. Finals individually in quadruple wheelchairs.  Dulan Alcott v Sam Schroder.  January 27, 2022. The Age Sport.  Photo: Eddie Jim.
Alcott then told the Monarch that the reason he gets out of bed every day is “to change perception”. (Eddie Jim)

“I’ve had a great career, but I think it’s time to do something else and use my platform to help more people.

“I’m really excited about the opportunity.”

The Queen asked Alcott more about his work on improving the quality of life of Australians with disabilities.

“It’s wonderful to help other people. So that’s what we’re going to focus on, isn’t it?” said the queen.

Alcott then told the Queen about his foundation which helps “young people with disabilities to make their dreams come true”.

Alcott said this will be done through initiatives that include university scholarships and startup funding, which he plans to become global soon.

Alcott then told the Queen about his foundation helping
The Australian of the Year told the Queen about his foundation which helps “young people with disabilities to realize their dreams”. (Aaron Francis / The Age NEWS)

“(We) really shed light on some things that people with disabilities often did not have the opportunity to do through employment, regular schools (and) participation in sports,” he said.

“I have to give you credit, the London Paralympics have changed the game for so many people like me.

“It really was one of the best moments of my life to play there.

“And I think the rest of the world is following suit now.”

During the conversation, Her Majesty also spoke with Dempsey, winner of the Senior Australian of the Year award, who spent more than 50 years volunteering for St John Ambulance.

The Queen then spoke with Dr. Daniel Nour, who founded Street Side Medics in 2020 to provide medical services to people who were homeless.

Ms. Shanna Whan, who founded Sober in the Country to help isolated people overcome alcohol addiction, was also introduced to Her Majesty.

The virtual invitation enabled the Queen to connect with the Australians.

“Since you’re unable to travel to Australia … maybe we could bring you Australia,” Hurley said.

The governor-general traveled to London this week to take part in the central weekend of the jubilee celebrations.

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