Her Majesty the Queen
Since 1952, Queen Elizabeth II has served as The Queen of the United Kingdom. She’s also the head of the Commonwealth, a mixture of 53 sovereign nations that includes numerous former British territories. Queen Elizabeth II has been extremely popular throughout her reign. She’s helped to stabilize the British monarchy at a time when monarchs have fallen worldwide.
In 2022, she will celebrate her Platinum Jubilee, when her reign as the British Head of State reaches 70 years. The United Kingdom will have a two-day bank holiday in June to commemorate her 70-year reign. It’s the first time a British monarch has celebrated a Platinum Jubilee.
Ten Facts About Queen Elizabeth II
- She’s the longest-reigning monarch in British history
- Her favorite dogs are corgis
- She’s the only person in the United Kingdom who can drive a car without a license
- The United Kingdom crowned her as the Queen on June 2, 1953
- Fourteen U.K Prime Ministers have served under her
- The Queen's favorite hobbies include pigeon racing, football, and horse riding
- The Queen owns two giant turtles, an elephant, and a jaguar
- The Queen worked as a mechanic during the Second World War
- Queen Elizabeth II became a homeowner at six years old
- Over 20 million people watched her coronation in 1953
The History of Queen Elizabeth II
The Childhood of Queen Elizabeth II
Queen Elizabeth II was the daughter of Prince Albert, the Duke of York, and his wife Lady Elizabeth Bowes-Lyon. On April 21, 1926, Lady Elizabeth Bowes-Lyon gave birth to Queen Elizabeth II. She was born in Mayfair, West London. Lady Elizabeth Bowes-Lyon heavily influenced the upbringing of Queen Elizabeth II. She instilled a strong Christian faith in the future Queen and ensured she received a top education in British history and law.
Queen Elizabeth II had very little chance of rising to the throne in her early years. However, in late 1936, her uncle—King Edward VIII—abdicated the throne. He wanted to wed an American divorcee called Wallis Simpson. It was an extremely controversial decision. Subsequently, her father would become King George VI, and she became the heir to the throne.
The Second World War
In September 1939, Britain entered the Second World War after Adolf Hitler refused to remove his troops from Poland amid continued aggression. Queen Elizabeth II, who was still a princess, decided to stay in London despite the advice to move to Canada. She even became a mechanic during the Second World War to assist her country during the conflict.
Queen Elizabeth II would regularly conduct radio broadcasts to the children of Britain to encourage them and support them through the war. Following the end of the Second World War, Queen Elizabeth II married Prince Phillip when he was a lieutenant in the Royal Navy. They first met when Queen Elizabeth II was only 13, and their relationship grew through visits and letters during the Second World War. He would later become known around the world as The Duke of Edinburgh.
Queen Elizabeth II’s Coronation
King George VI’s health rapidly declined in 1951; he died on February 6, 1952. Elizabeth was next in line to become the Queen. She was crowned on June 2, 1952, in front of a massive worldwide TV audience.
For the next 70 years, Queen Elizabeth II played a critical role in the prosperity of the British Royal Family. Although it hasn’t always been smooth for the Royal Family—especially during the 1990s with the death of Princess Diana—she has kept public trust in the monarchy. Even though she has almost no influence in the politics of the United Kingdom, she remains the British Head of State in 2022.
Britain's Platinum Jubilee Celebrations in 2022
The Two-Day Bank Holiday
Britain and the rest of the Commonwealth will celebrate the Queen's Platinum Jubilee throughout 2022. To celebrate this historic moment, there will be an unprecedented number of celebrations in the United Kingdom, including an extremely rare two-day bank holiday. The Royal Family hopes the bank holiday will give the country the chance to celebrate the historic milestone alongside the monarchy.
Thursday 2nd June
The Queen's Birthday Parade
On June 2, over 1,400 parading soldiers, 400 musicians, and 200 horses will come together to mark the Queen's official birthday. The parade will start at Buckingham Palace, London, and continue down The Mall towards the Horse Guards Parade. The parade will finish with a spectacular traditional RAF fly-past watched by the Royal Family.
Platinum Jubilee Beacons
The United Kingdom will continue its tradition of marking weddings and coronations with the lighting of the beacons. On June 2, 2022, the nation will light over 1,500 beacons across the United Kingdom to celebrate the Platinum Jubilee.
Friday 3rd June
Service of Thanksgiving
The Royal Family will host a Service of Thanksgiving at London’s iconic St Paul’s Cathedral. The monarchy will announce details closer to the time.
Saturday 4th June
Platinum Party at the Palace
The BBC will broadcast a special live concert from Buckingham Palace, London, that will bring together some of the world’s most famous acts. The public can enter the event, but the Royal Family will release ticket details in the coming months.
The Derby at Epsom Downs
The Queen, along with Members of the Royal Family, will attend the derby at Epsom Downs.
Sunday 5th June
The Big Jubilee Lunch
The Big Jubilee Lunch will be a nationwide celebration of the Queen’s 70-year reign. The monarchy encourages people from all walks of life to meet with their local community and enjoy street parties. Over 1400 people have registered to host Big Jubilee Lunches across the country so far.
The Platinum Jubilee Pageant
The London-based pageant will tell the story of The Queen’s 70-year reign through artistic performers, musicians, military personnel, dancers, and key workers. The ceremony will be a mixture of pomp and party with music, street arts, theater, and cutting-edge visual technology.
Summer 2022 is an excellent time to visit the United Kingdom. If you visit in early June, you’ll witness rare national celebrations for the reign of one of the world’s most prominent figures. London will be buzzing throughout the celebrations.