A true queen wanted

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The Queen has ruled for longer than any other Monarch in British history, becoming a much loved and respected figure across the globe. Her extraordinary reign has seen her travel more widely than any other monarch, undertaking many historic overseas visits. Known for her sense of duty and her devotion to a life of service, she has been an important figurehead for the UK and the Commonwealth during times of enormous social change. Her Majesty continues to carry out a full programme of engagements, from visits to charities and schools, to hosting visiting He of State, to leading the nation in Remembrance and celebratory events - all supported by other members of the Royal Family.

The Queen sees public and voluntary service as one of the most important elements of her work. The Queen has links - as Royal Patron or President - with over charities, military associations, professional bodies and public service organisations.

These vary from well-established international charities to smaller bodies working in a specialist area or on a local basis only. Her patronages and charities cover a wide range of issues, from opportunities for young people, to the preservation of wildlife and the environment. Having Her Majesty as Royal patron or president provides vital publicity for the work of these organisations, and allows their enormous achievements and contributions to society to be recognised.

I think I speak for my generation when I say that the example and continuity provided by The Queen is not only very rare among leaders but a great source of pride and reassurance. The Queen carries out all of her duties against the backdrop of a full personal life which has seen her raise four children and welcome grandchildren, and now great-grandchildren to the Royal Family. A post shared by Clarence House clarencehouse.

When she was born in Mayfair in , Princess Elizabeth now The Queen and her family did not expect that she would one day become Monarch. Her Royal Highness was expected to live a relatively normal, if privileged, life with her close-knit and loving family. But everything changed in December when her uncle — King Edward VIII - abdicated, leaving her father as King, and her as next in line to the throne.

The Queen was born at 2. She was named after her mother, while her two middle names are those of her paternal great-grandmother, Queen Alexandra, and paternal grandmother, Queen Mary. The Princess's early years were spent at Piccadilly, the London house taken by her parents shortly after her birth, and at White Lodge in Richmond Park.

A post shared by The Royal Family theroyalfamily. She also spent time at the country homes of her paternal grandparents, King George V and Queen Mary, and her mother's parents, the Earl and Countess of Strathmore. The family of four was very close. When she was six years old, her parents took over Royal Lodge in Windsor Great Park as their own country home. Princess Elizabeth was now first in line to the throne, and a figure of even more intense public interest. Princess Elizabeth's quiet family life came to an end in , when her grandfather, King George V, died.

In , at the height of the Blitz, the young Princesses were moved for their safety to Windsor Castle, where they spent most of the war years. It was a time of austerity and anxiety for the whole country, including the Royal Family.

But at Christmas time there was a period of light relief when the young Princesses put on pantomimes with the children of members of staff for the enjoyment of her family and employees of the Royal Household. Princess Elizabeth and Princess Margaret were educated at home like many girls from wealthy families at that time. After her father succeeded to the throne in and Princess Elizabeth became heir presumptive first in line to the throne , she started to study constitutional history and law as preparation for her future role.

She received tuition from her father, as well as sessions with Henry Marten, the Vice-Provost of Eton. She was also instructed in religion by the Archbishop of Canterbury. Princess Elizabeth also learned French from a of French and Belgian governesses.

It is a skill which has stood The Queen in good stead, as she often has cause to use it when speaking to ambassadors and he of state from French-speaking countries, and when visiting French-speaking areas of Canada. Princess Elizabeth also studied art and music, learned to ride, and became a strong swimmer. The Queen and The Duke of Edinburgh's enduring marriage saw them support each other through many years of Royal duties, and produced four children, eight grandchildren and eleven great-grandchildren.

Though the early years of their marriage saw them living a relatively normal life as a naval officer and wife, The Queen's Accession changed everything as Her Majesty took on her new role, and The Duke of Edinburgh a new status in support of her work. Their engagement was announced on 9 July and the couple were married in Westminster Abbey on 20 November The event was fairly simple, as Britain was still recovering from the war, and Princess Elizabeth had to collect clothing coupons for her dress, like any other young bride.

In a letter from Princess Elizabeth's father, King George VI following the wedding, he wrote about his sadness at giving her away, and his joy at her evident happiness with Prince Philip:. I can see that you are sublimely happy with Philip which is right but don't forget us is the wish of.

Prince Andrew and Prince Edward were the first children to be born to a reigning monarch since Queen Victoria had her family. Did you know? Princess Elizabeth's platinum and diamond engagement ring was made by the jewellers, Philip Antrobus Ltd, using diamonds from a tiara belonging to Prince Philip's mother. Their great grandchildren are Savannah Phillips b. He has, quite simply, been my strength and stay all these years, and I, and his whole family, and this and many other countries, owe him a debt greater than he would ever claim or we shall ever know.

Family life has remained an essential support to The Queen. The family usually spends Christmas together at Sandringham in Norfolk, attending church on Christmas Day. The Duke of Edinburgh has made an invaluable contribution to my life over these past fifty years, as he has to so many charities and organisations with which he has been involved. We both have a special place in our hearts for our children. I want to express my admiration for The Prince of Wales and for all he has achieved for this country. Our children, and all my family, have given me such love and unstinting help over the years, and especially in recent months.

The Duke of Edinburgh was a devoted companion or 'Consort' to The Queen in her official duties since she acceded the throne in Princess Elizabeth immediately acceded to the throne, becoming Queen Elizabeth II and taking on all of the responsibilities which came with her new title. Later in the year, the date was set for the Coronation at Westminster Abbey and preparations began for the spectacular ceremony. In , King George VI's health was poor, and illness forced him to abandon a proposed Commonwealth tour. Princess Elizabeth, accompanied by Prince Philip, took his place.

On Wednesday 6 February , she received the news of her father's death and her own Accession to the throne while staying in a remote part of Kenya. Following the news, the tour was abandoned, and the young Princess flew back to Britain as Queen. She was greeted by Prime Minister Winston Churchill and other officials at the airport before returning to Clarence House, where the Royal Standard was flown for the first time in her reign.

The Coronation took place in Westminster Abbey on 2 June Representatives of the peers, the Commons and all the great public interests in Britain, the Prime Ministers and leading citizens of the other Commonwealth countries, and representatives of foreign states were present. Crowds of people viewed the procession all along the route, despite heavy rain. The ceremony was also broadcast on radio around the world and, at The Queen's request, on television for the first time. Television brought home to hundreds of thousands of people around the Commonwealth the splendour and ificance of the Coronation in a way never before possible.

The Coronation was followed by drives through every part of London, a review of the fleet at Spithead, and visits to Scotland, Northern Ireland and Wales. Such events help reinforce the Sovereign's role as a focus for national identity and unity as people across the Commonwealth come together to mark an important occasion for their Head of State. The actual anniversary of The Queen's Accession on 6 February was commemorated in church services throughout that month. The Queen spent the anniversary weekend at Windsor with her family and the full jubilee celebrations began in the summer of On 4 May, at the Palace of Westminster, both Houses of Parliament presented loyal addresses to The Queen, who in her reply stressed that the keynote of the jubilee was to be the unity of the nation.

During the summer months The Queen embarked on a large scale tour, having decided that she wished to mark her jubilee by meeting as many of her people as possible. No other Sovereign had visited so much of Britain in the course of just three months - the six jubilee tours in the UK and Northern Ireland covered 36 counties. The home tours began in Glasgow on 17 May, with greater crowds than the city had ever seen before. The tours continued throughout England and Wales - in Lancashire over a million people turned out on one day - before culminating in a visit to Northern Ireland.

The climax of the national celebrations came in early June. On the evening of Monday 6 June, The Queen lit a bonfire beacon at Windsor which started a chain of beacons across the country. She declared, 'My Lord Mayor, when I was twenty-one I pledged my life to the service of our people and I asked for God's help to make good that vow.

Although that vow was made in my salad days, when I was green in judgement, I do not regret nor retract one word of it. An estimated million people watched on television as the procession returned down the Mall. Back at Buckingham Palace, The Queen made several balcony appearances. Street parties and village parties started up all over the country: in London alone 4, were reported to have been held.

The final event of the central week of celebrations was a river progress down the Thames from Greenwich to Lambeth on Thursday 9 June, emulating the ceremonial barge trips of Elizabeth I. After The Queen had opened the Silver Jubilee Walkway and the new South Bank Jubilee Gardens, the journey ended with a firework display, and a procession of lighted carriages took The Queen back to Buckingham Palace for more balcony appearances to a cheering crowd. The Queen's Silver Jubilee Appeal was set up in , and gave the nation an opportunity to show its affection for Her Majesty and its gratitude for her dedicated service over 25 years.

The Queen chose that the Appeal should focus on raising funds to support young people and, in particular, on encouraging and helping young people to serve others in the community. Its emphasis is in education and personal development, in and out of school, in low-income communities across the UK. For more information, please visit www. A packed programme of events took place in to celebrate fifty years of The Queen's reign. The Queen and The Duke of Edinburgh undertook extensive tours of the Commonwealth and the UK, leading to an extraordinarily busy year for the royal couple.

Gratitude, respect and pride, these words sum up how I feel about the people of this country and the Commonwealth - and what this Golden Jubilee means to me. The central focus for the year was the Jubilee weekend in June which began with a classical music concert in the gardens at Buckingham Palace.

The evening ended with a spectacular fireworks display and The Queen lighting the National Beacon, the last in a string of 2, beacons which had been lit in a chain across the Commonwealth. During a lunch at Guildhall, London, on 4 June , Her Majesty made a speech in which she thanked the nation for their support throughout her reign:.

I would like to give my heartfelt thanks to each and every one of you - here in Guildhall, those of you waiting in the Mall and the streets of London, and all those up and down this country and throughout the Commonwealth, who may be watching this on television.

Thank you all for your enthusiasm to mark and celebrate these past fifty years. The Queen turned 80 on 21 April and celebrated her official birthday on 17 June A of events took place to celebrate the birthday, both around Her Majesty's actual birthday on 21 April and her official birthday on 17 June. A unique Children's Party at the Palace was held at Buckingham Palace to celebrate the magic of books. The Queen celebrated with others of her generation who had similarly led a life of service and dedication at a 'Service over sixty' reception hosted by Her Majesty, which celebrated guests over the age of sixty who have made a ificant contribution to national life, as did the Help the Aged Living Legends Awards at Windsor Castle.

And on 19 April, guests celebrating their 80th birthdays on the same day as her were invited to Buckingham Palace. The Queen spent her actual birthday meeting the crowds on a walkabout in Windsor before attending a private family dinner at the newly restored Kew Palace, followed by a spectacular fireworks display. Her Majesty received almost 40, birthday messages from members of the public during her 80th birthday year. Events to mark the anniversary included a Service of Celebration at Westminster Abbey followed by the unveiling of a new Jubilee Walkway panoramic panel in Parliament Square.

The Diamond Jubilee was marked with a spectacular central weekend and a series of regional tours throughout the UK and Commonwealth. The Queen and The Duke of Edinburgh travelled as widely as possible across England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland, visiting every region during whilst other members of the Royal Family visited all of the Commonwealth realms countries where The Queen is Head of State between them.

The Thames Diamond Jubilee ant also took place on the Sunday, with up to 1, boats assembled on the Thames from across the UK, the Commonwealth and around the world. Performers included Will. The funds raised have gone towards initiatives such as Queen's Young Leaders, which supports young people across the Commonwealth who are blazing a trail in their communities.

The day was treated as any other day as The Queen and Prince Philip travelled by steam train from Edinburgh to Tweedbank, where she formally opened the new Scottish Borders Railway, although she did refer to the milestone in her speech saying:. Prince Philip and I are very grateful for the warmth of your welcome on this occasion.

Many including you, First Minister, have also kindly noted another ificance attaching to today, although it is not one to which I have ever aspired. Inevitably, a long life can pass by many milestones; my own is no exception. But I thank you all, and the many others at home and overseas, for your touching messages of great kindness.

The Queen celebrated her 90th birthday on 21 April and her official birthday on 11 June , the second day of three days of national celebrations. Her Majesty's actual birthday was spent in Windsor where she meet well-wishers during a walkabout in the town centre and met others celebrating their 90th birthdays, before unveiling a plaque marking The Queen's Walkway.

Later in the evening, Her Majesty, with The Prince of Wales, lit the principal beacon which set in train a series of over beacons across the country and worldwide to celebrate her momentous milestone. Prayers at the service were led by people representing aspects of Her Majesty's life and role. June 12 saw a huge street party and parade take place on the Mall - The Patron's Lunch - a celebration of over charities and organisations that The Queen was Patron of. The Duke of Cambridge paid tribute to his 'Granny', speaking of Her Majesty's strong health, relentless energy, her sharp wit and for being at the helm of her family, nation and Commonwealth.

To coincide with the occasion Buckingham Palace re-released a photograph of Her Majesty taken by David Bailey in In the photograph, The Queen is wearing a suite of sapphire jewellery given to her by King George VI as a wedding gift in Despite her busy programme of engagements and duties as Head of State, The Queen manages to maintain hobbies and interests away from her official work.

An animal lover since childhood, her greatest passions are for horses and dogs. She annually attends the Derby at Epsom, one of the classic flat races in Britain, and the Summer Race Meeting at Ascot, which has been a Royal occasion since As an owner and breeder of thoroughbreds, Her Majesty often visits other race meetings to watch her horses run, and also frequently attends equestrian events.

The Queen's horses have won races at Royal Ascot on a of occasions. The Queen also enjoys walking in the countryside and spending time with her dogs. For her eighteenth birthday, The Queen was given a Corgi named Susan from whom numerous successive dogs were bred.

A lesser known interest is Scottish country dancing. Each year during her stay at Balmoral Castle, The Queen gives dances known as Gillies' Balls, for neighbours, estate and Castle staff and members of the local community. Reserve infantry unit of the Canadian Army.

A true queen wanted

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