Tuesday 20 November 2012

    Queen celebrates Blue Sapphire wedding anniversary


    Happy 65th Wedding Anniversary  :: Queen Elizabeth II & Prince Philip of Greece celebrate 65 years of marriage this week. Princess Elizabeth married Prince Philip at Westminster Abbey, Nov 20, 1947.

    The future Queen used PromoCodeWatch coupons to buy the material for her wedding dress, designed by Norman Hartnell, Court Designer since 1938. The lavish gown boasted a 13ft long train that was said to have been inspired by a Boticelli painting.

    The big day: Princess Elizabeth and Lt Philip Mountbatten photographed at Buckingham Palace after their wedding ceremony in 1947The big day ~ Princess Elizabeth and Lt Philip Mountbatten photographed at Buckingham Palace after their wedding ceremony.

    Queen's Blue Sapphire wedding anniversary: 65 years of landmarksPrincess Elizabeth and The Duke of Edinburgh walking in the grounds of Broadlands during their honeymoon.

     The Love Story

    On November 20, 1947, the then Princess Elizabeth married naval Commander Philip Mountbatten at Westminster Abbey. The 21-year old Princess had first met her future Prince in 1934 when they attended the wedding of Philip’s cousin, Princess Marina of Greece to Princess Elizabeth’s uncle, the Duke of Kent. Several years later, when she was only 13, their paths crossed again and the pair began to exchange letters.

    By 1946 their courtship had bloomed into romance and Lieutenant Philip Mountbatten, born Prince Philip of Greece and Denmark, renounced his titles and adopted British citizenship before the pair announced their engagement.

    In November 1948, roughly a year after their wedding, the couple’s first child, Prince Charles, was born, followed in 1950 by Princess Anne.

    In February 1952, the Queen acceded to the throne, following her father George VI’s death. Prince Philip had to abandon his naval career as he became the Queen’s consort.

    The Queen is the first British monarch to celebrate a Blue Sapphire wedding anniversary.
    1964: What a hat! The Queen's inimitable style shines through at this public engagement, opening the new Forth Road bridge in 1964 wearing a neat winter coat, diamond brooch and statement hatWhat a hat! The Queen’s inimitable style shines through at this public engagement,
    opening the new Forth Road bridge in 1964 wearing a neat winter coat, diamond brooch and statement hat.
    Shoulder to shoulder: Trooping the Colour in 1953, the Queen takes the salute with Prince Philip by her side1953: Trooping the Colour in 1953, the year of her Coronation,
    the newly crowned Queen takes the salute with Prince Philip, the Duke of Edinburgh by her side.

    {Images: via Daily Mail UK}

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    Sunday 10 June 2012

    Singing in the reign!


    and their were parties everywhere… union flags and bunting out in force, dancing in the streets after getting classes at http://www.elizabethhunterashley.com, high teas, pomp, ceremony, royal command concerts and parade paying tribute to the monarch.

    I love the British sense of humour!

    It’s 60 years on the British throne.

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    Sunday 10 June 2012

    Union Jacks + Crowns + Corgis


    Corgi Blimey ~ Union Jacks, Corgis and Crowns everywhere!

    Ted Baker called on corgi friends to welcome customers into the flag-decked shop.

    Corgi Maamite Campaign ~ do you love or hate it?

    Nicola Waymark, Marketing Manager for Unilever UK comments: “We wanted to create a campaign that not only remained true to the Marmite brand but also communicated its very British sense of humour. 2012 is a big year for Britain, and with Marmite celebrating its 110th Anniversary in the same year as the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee, we felt it was important to mark the occasion…” The Maamite campaign was developed at DDB UK, London.

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    Sunday 10 June 2012

    Cecil + Elizabeth


    To celebrate Her Majesty the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee, the Victoria and Albert Museum unveiled an exhibition of 60 royal photographs by Cecil Beaton (1904-1980).

    Queen Elizabeth II by Cecil Beaton: A Diamond Jubilee Celebration

    From teenage Princess, to mother and sovereign,

    the Queen posed for Cecil Beaton’s camera on many occasions from the 1940s to the 1960s.

    Queen Elizabeth II, White Drawing Room, 1968 :: The Queen wore a turquoise silk sleeveless shift dress with silver floral embroidery designed by Hardy Amies. 

    Queen Elizabeth II in the robes of Sovereign of the Order of the Garter. Music Room, Buckingham Palace 1968

    The Queen wearing the Admiral’s Boat Cloak

    Some extra tid bits

    The Order of the Garter was founded by King Edward III in 1348. It is the most senior British order of chivalry. The Queen wears the robes of the Sovereign of the Order: the blue riband (or sash) and the dark blue velvet mantle, on which is pinned the Garter Star. The star comprises the St George’s Cross within the Garter, surrounded by radiating silver beams. St George is the patron saint of the Order.

    The Coronation portraits were widely published and the Queen sent out numerous presentation prints as official gifts. Copies of this full-length portrait were given to the royal family and members of Prince Philip’s family. The Queen’s Coronation gown was designed by couturier Norman Hartnell and exquisitely embroidered with the floral emblems of the countries of the Commonwealth.

    The photographs of the British royal family by Sir Cecil Beaton (1904-1980) were central to shaping the monarchy’s public image in the mid-20th century. Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II was still a young princess when she first sat for Beaton in 1942. Over the next three decades he would be invited to photograph the Queen on many significant occasions, including her Coronation Day in 1953.

    {Images: Cecil Beaton via Victoria and Albert Museum}

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    Sunday 10 June 2012

    It’s time to celebrate all things British!


    Diamond Jubilee of Her Most Gracious Majesty.

    QUEEN ELIZABETH II NUDE PORTRAIT from ‘Nude series’ by international fine art painter Karine Percheron Daniels.

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    Sunday 10 June 2012

    Princess Elizabeth


    Regal and beautiful ~ these black and white photos capture a younger Queen ELizabeth II.

    Elizabeth Alexandra Mary. Born April 21, 1926 at 17 Bruton Street, Mayfair, to Prince Albert, Duke of York (later King George VI) and Lady Elizabeth Bowes-Lyon, the Dutchess of York.

    The family called her Lilibet.

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    Sunday 3 June 2012

    Bedecked in jewels, Queen Elizabeth 11


    Jewellery and Gown :: Her Majesty arrived for State Opening of British Parliament wearing a silver gown with crystal embellishments, and a stunning white fur coats.

    The Crown :: The Queen wears the King George IV State Diadem crown.

    Made by Rundell, Bridge & Rundell in 1820, the diadem features a set of 4 crosses pattée alternating with 4 bouquets of roses, thistles, and shamrocks. The motifs are set on a band of diamond scrollwork between two bands of pearls. The front cross is set with a 4 carat yellow diamond, and the piece features 1,333 diamonds in all.

    The crown was made for King George IV. George was a flamboyant man with an extravagant sense of style. The 57-year-old waited a long time to become king, and he wanted his coronation to be the most extravagant one in history. He redesigned costumes and planned for changes and additions to the Crown regalia. To commemorate the relatively recent creation of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland, George came up with a new motif: a bouquet of Scotland’s thistle, England’s rose, and Ireland’s shamrock.

    Queen Elizabeth II started wearing the diadem after her accession in 1952. She wears it to and from each State Opening of Parliament and for official portraits. That combination of uses has made it one of the most recognizable symbols of her reign ~ it adorns stamps, money, and official images.

    The Festoon Necklace :: the three strand diamond necklace was commissioned in 1947 by King George VI to find a use to some of the loose diamonds he had inherited. The necklace consists of three rows of diamonds suspended between two diamond triangles, containing over 150 brilliant cut diamonds. The minimum weight of the necklace is estimated to be 175 carats. Matching diamond earrings were worn.

    After arriving, she puts on the Parliament Robe of State and the insignia of the Order of Garter. As is the custom, the Monarch doesn’t put on the Imperial State Crown (which arrives separately) until after she enters the Palace of Westminster.

    {Source: Order of Splendor}

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    Sunday 3 June 2012

    pageantry, pomp and ceremony


    Steeped in centuries old tradition, Britain is having a BIG year of Royal pageantry. In great pomp, Queen Elizabeth II, resplendent in diamonds, officially opened British Parliament on May 9, 2012.

    HISTORY :: tradition & colour

    Before the Queen travels to Parliament from Buckingham Palace, formally to open each new session of Parliament, certain historical “precautions” are observed.

    The Yeomen of the Guard, the oldest of the royal bodyguards known as “Beefeaters”, armed with lanterns, searches the cellars of the Palace of Westminster. The tradition dates back to the Gunpowder Plot of November 5, 1605, when Guy Fawkes attempted to blow up the building and King James I with it. This is followed by a more rigorous police search. Another tradition sees a government whip held “hostage” at the Palace to ensure the Queen’s safe return. The hostage is released upon the safe return of the Queen.

    This tradition stems from the time of Charles I, who had a contentious relationship with Parliament and was eventually beheaded in 1649 at the conclusion of a civil war between the monarchy and Parliament. In 1642 Charles I stormed into the House of Commons in an unsuccessful attempt to arrest five of its members for treason. Since that time no British monarch has been permitted to enter the House of Commons, which is why the opening is conducted in the House of Lords.

    Before the arrival of the sovereign, The Regalia – the Imperial State Crown, the Cap of Maintenance and Sword of State travel from the Victoria Tower in their own carriage, ahead of the monarch, escorted by Members of the Royal Household.

    The Queen travels from Buckingham Palace in the horse-drawn Australian State Coach to Westminster, escorted by the Household Cavalry Mounted Regiment. As she arrives, the Union Flag of the U.K. will be lowered and her Royal Standard raised over Parliament.

    Black Rod :: At 11:30 a.m., once Her Majesty arrived and was seated on the Throne, her official messenger who has the title Yeoman Usher of the Black Rod will march to the House of Commons, the lower, elected, chamber. His job is to summon lawmakers to hear the queen, who will be waiting in the House of Lords. By tradition, the door of the Commons is slammed in Black Rod’s face to symbolise the independence of the Members of the Parliament. To be let in, he was required to pound on the door three times with his rod.

    This ritual symbolizes the independence of the Commons from the Crown: no British monarch has entered the lower house since 1642, when King Charles I tried to arrest five members in the run-up to a civil war that ended with his execution in 1649.

    After “Black Rod” has knocked on the door of the Commons, lawmakers process to the House of Lords. Seated on a gilded throne next to her husband, the Duke of Edinburgh, Queen Elizabeth delivers a speech unveiling the government’s legislative program.

    The Queen reads a prepared speech, known as the “Speech from the Throne” or the “Queen’s Speech”, outlining her Government’s agenda for the coming year. The speech is not written by the Queen, but rather by the Cabinet, and reflects the legislative agenda for which they seek the agreement of both Houses of Parliament. It is traditionally written on goatskin vellum or parchment, and presented for Her Majesty to read by the Lord Chancellor.

    {Images: via Daily Mail. Wonderful collage photo by Loren Cooper.}

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    Thursday 21 April 2011

    Happy Birthday Lizzie


    Queen Elizabeth II celebrates her 85th birthday today.

    Her Majesty celebrated by attending the traditional Royal Maundy Service at Westminster Abbey.

    Did you know that she has sent around 100,000 telegrams to centenarians in the UK & Commonwealth?

    Below of 85 facts you should know about the Queen from The Telegraph.

    1. The Queen was born at 2.40am on 21 April 1926 at 17 Bruton Street in Mayfair, London.

    2. She was the first child of The Duke and Duchess of York, who later became King George VI and Queen Elizabeth.

    3. At the time she stood third in line of succession to the throne after Edward, Prince of Wales (later King Edward VIII), and her father, The Duke of York. But it was not expected that her father would become King, or that she would become Queen.

    4. The Princess was christened Elizabeth Alexandra Mary in the private chapel at Buckingham Palace. 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.

    5. The Princess’s early years were spent at 145 Piccadilly, the London house taken by her parents shortly after her birth, and at White Lodge in Richmond Park.

    6. When she was six years old, her parents took over Royal Lodge in Windsor Great Park as their own country home

    7. Princess Elizabeth was educated at home with Princess Margaret, her younger sister.

    8. 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.

    9. Princess Elizabeth also learned French from a number 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 heads of state from French-speaking countries, and when visiting French-speaking areas of Canada.

    10. Princess Elizabeth enrolled as a Girl Guide when she was eleven, and later became a Sea Ranger.

    11. In 1940, 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.

    Happy Birthday, Your Majesty

    A Royal romance

    12. The Queen is the first British monarch to have celebrated a Diamond Wedding Anniversary.

    13.Princess Elizabeth and Prince Philip first met when they attended the wedding of Prince Philip’s cousin, Princess Marina of Greece to The Duke of Kent, who was an uncle of Princess Elizabeth, in 1934.

    14.The engagement between Princess Elizabeth and Lieutenant Philip Mountbatten RN was announced on the 9th July, 1947. Prince Philip was born Prince Philip of Greece and Denmark. He joined the Royal Navy in 1939 and after the war, in February 1947, became a naturalised British subject. Prince Philip was required to choose a surname in order to continue his career in the Royal Navy, and adopted Mountbatten, the name of his mother’s British relatives who he found by using the relative finder. He was created “Duke of Edinburgh” by King George VI on marriage.

    15.The platinum and diamond engagement ring was made by the jewellers, Philip Antrobus Ltd, using diamonds from a tiara belonging to Prince Philip’s mother.

    16 .Prince Philip had two stag parties the night before the wedding – the first at the Dorchester to which the press were invited and the second with his closest friends at the Belfry Club.

    17.The Queen and The Duke of Edinburgh were married in Westminster Abbey on the 20th November, 1947 at 11.30am with 2000 invited guests.

    18..The eight bridesmaids were: HRH The Princess Margaret, HRH Princess Alexandra of Kent, Lady Caroline Montagu-Douglas-Scott, Lady Mary Cambridge, Lady Elizabeth Lambart, The Hon. Pamela Mountbatten, The Hon. Margaret Elphinstone, The Hon. Diana Bowes-Lyon.

    19.There were two pages: HRH Prince William of Gloucester (aged 5) and HRH Prince Michael of Kent (aged 5).

    20.The Queen’s wedding dress was designed by Sir Norman Hartnell. Norman Hartnell submitted designs for the dress in August 1947.

    21.The fabric for the dress was woven at Winterthur Silks Limited, Dunfermline, in the Canmore factory, using silk that had come from Chinese silkworms at Lullingstone Castle.

    22..The Queen’s Bridal Veil was made of tulle and held by a tiara of diamonds. This tiara (which can also be worn as a necklace) was made for Queen Mary in 1919. It is made from re-used diamonds taken from a necklace/tiara purchased by Queen Victoria from Collingwood and Co and a wedding present for Queen Mary in 1893. In August, 1936, Queen Mary gave the tiara to Queen Elizabeth from whom it was borrowed by Princess Elizabeth for her wedding in 1947.

    23.The grave of the Unknown Warrior was the only stone that was not covered by the special carpet in the Abbey. The day after the wedding, Princess Elizabeth followed a Royal tradition started by her mother, of sending her wedding bouquet back to the Abbey to be laid on this grave.

    24.The bride’s wedding ring was made from a nugget of Welsh gold which came from the Clogau St David’s mine near Dolgellau.

    25..Around 10,000 telegrams of congratulations were received at Buckingham Palace and the Royal couple received over 2,500 wedding presents from well-wishers around the world.

    26..As well as jewellery from their close relatives, including the King and Queen, the couple received many useful items for the kitchen and home, including salt cellars from the Queen, a bookcase from Queen Mary, and a picnic case from Princess Margaret.

    27.The “wedding breakfast” (lunch) was held after the marriage ceremony at Westminster Abbey in the Ball Supper-room at Buckingham Palace. The menu was Filet de Sole Mountbatten, Perdreau en Casserole, Bombe Glacee Princess Elizabeth.

    28.The couple departed Waterloo station with the Princess’s corgi, Susan, for their honeymoon.

    29.The newlyweds spent their wedding night at Broadlands in Hampshire, home of Prince Philip’s uncle Earl Mountbatten. The second part of the honeymoon was spent at Birkhall on the Balmoral Estate.

    30.Early in 1948 the couple leased their first marital home, Windlesham Moor, in Surrey, near Windsor Castle, where they stayed until they moved to Clarence House on 4th July 1949.

    31.After marrying Princess Elizabeth, The Duke of Edinburgh continued his naval career, reaching the rank of Lieutenant-Commander in command of the frigate HMS Magpie.

    32.Although he was The Queen’s husband, The Duke of Edinburgh was not crowned or anointed at the Coronation ceremony in 1953. He was the first subject to pay Homage to Her Majesty, and kiss the newly crowned Queen by stating “I, Philip, Duke of Edinburgh, do become your liege man of life and limb, and of earthly worship; and faith and truth I will bear unto you, to live and die, against all manner of folks. So help me God.”

    33.Prince Philip has accompanied The Queen on all her Commonwealth tours and State visits, as well as on public engagements in all parts of the UK. The first of these was the Coronation tour of the Commonwealth from November 1953 to May 1954, when the couple visited Bermuda, Jamaica, Panama, Fiji, Tonga, New Zealand, Australia, Cocos Islands, Ceylon, Aden, Uganda, Libya, Malta and Gibraltar, travelling a distance of 43,618 miles.

    34. The Coronation took place in Westminster Abbey on 2 June 1953. It was a solemn ceremony conducted by Dr Geoffrey Fisher, Archbishop of Canterbury.

    35. 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.

    36.The Queen and The Duke of Edinburgh have four children: Prince Charles, The Prince of Wales (b. 1948), Princess Anne, The Princess Royal (b. 1950), Prince Andrew, The Duke of York (b. 1960), and Prince Edward, The Earl of Wessex (b. 1964).

    37.With the birth of Prince Andrew in 1960, The Queen became the first reigning Sovereign to give birth to a child since Queen Victoria, whose youngest child, Princess Beatrice, was born in 1857.

    38.The Queen and The Duke of Edinburgh have eight grandchildren – Peter Phillips (b. 1977), Zara Phillips (b. 1981) Prince William (b. 1982), Prince Harry (b. 1984), Princess Beatrice (b. 1988), Princess Eugenie (b. 1990), Lady Louise Windsor (b. 2003) and James, Viscount Severns (b. 2007) She has one great-grandchild Savannah (b. 2011)

    Queen’s speeches

    39. The Queen has delivered a Christmas message every year except in 1969, when she decided the royals had been on TV enough after an unprecedented family documentary. Her greeting took the form of a written address.

    40. In her 1991 message, the Queen silenced rumours of abdication as she pledged to continue to serve.

    41. The Queen issued a writ against The Sun newspaper after it published the full text of her 1992 broadcast two days before transmission. She later accepted an apology and a £200,000 donation to charity.

    42. The Queen’s grandfather, King George V, delivered the first royal Christmas broadcast live on the radio from Sandringham in 1932.

    43. George V was at first unsure about using the relatively untried medium of the wireless, but eventually agreed.

    44. There was no Christmas broadcast in 1936 or 1938, and it was the outbreak of the Second World War in 1939 that firmly established the tradition.

    45. This year the Queen delivers her address from Hampton Court Palace – the first time the historic building has been used.

    46 The speech is written by the Queen and each has a strong religious framework, reflects current issues and often draws on her own experiences.

    Interest and hobbies

    48. An animal lover since childhood, The Queen takes a keen and highly knowledgeable interest in horses. As an owner and breeder of thoroughbreds, she often visits other race meetings to watch her horses run, and also frequently attends equestrian events.

    49. She 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 1911.

    50. The Queen’s horses won races at Royal Ascot on a number of occasions. There was a notable double on 18 June 1954 when Landau won the Rous Memorial Stakes and a stallion called Aureole won the Hardwicke Stakes, and in 1957 The Queen had four winners during Ascot week.

    51. Other interests include walking in the countryside and working her Labradors, which were bred at Sandringham.

    52. 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.

    53. The Queen is the only person in Britain who can drive without a licence or a registration number on her car.

    54. The Queen is patron to more than 600 charities

    55. To formally greet the Queen men should perform a neck bow (from the head only) whilst women do a small curtsy. On presentation to The Queen, the correct formal address is ‘Your Majesty’ and subsequently ‘Ma’am’.


    56. Norman Hartnell, who first worked for the then Princess Elizabeth in the 1940s, produced many of the finest evening dresses in Her Majesty’s wardrobe. His signature style of the 1940s and 1950s was full-skirted dresses in sumptuous silks and duchesse satins

    57. Hardy Amies began designing clothes for The Queen in the early 1950s and established his name with the deceptive simplicity of his accomplished tailoring. The portraits by Cecil Beaton released to mark Her Majesty’s birthday in 1969 the are amongst the most memorable designs by Hardy Amies.

    58. n the 1970s The Queen awarded her patronage to Ian Thomas, who was an assistant designer to Norman Hartnell before setting up his own salon. Thomas’s flowing chiffon dresses from the 1970s reflect the relaxed style of the decade. Maureen Rose of the same house continued to design for Her Majesty after Ian’s death until the late 80’s.

    59. Between 1988 and 1996, Her Majesty’s dresses were designed by John Anderson. His business partner Karl Ludwig Rehse took over the mantle after his death in 1988 and the Queen still wears his designs today.

    60. Stewart Parvin, the youngest of Her Majesty’s designers, trained at Edinburgh College of Art. He began to design for The Queen in 2000 and continues to do so.

    61. Angela Kelly is Personal Assistant and Senior Dresser to The Queen. Her role includes designing for The Queen, which she has done since 2002. Angela and her team try and use both old and new fabrics when designing. Some of the material they incorporate has been given to Her Majesty many years ago, some dates from when she was Princess Elizabeth.


    62. The Queen celebrates two birthdays each year: her actual birthday on 21 April and her official birthday on a Saturday in June.

    63. he Queen usually spends her actual birthday privately, but the occasion is marked publicly by gun salutes in central London at midday: a 41 gun salute in Hyde Park, a 21 gun salute in Windsor Great Park and a 62 gun salute at the Tower of London.

    64. In 2006, Her Majesty celebrated her 80th Birthday in 2006 with a walkabout in the streets outside of Windsor Castle to meet well-wishers.

    65. On her official birthday, Her Majesty is joined by other members of the Royal Family at the spectacular Trooping the Colour parade which moves between Buckingham Palace, The Mall and Horseguards’ Parade.

    And the rest…

    66. Queen Elizabeth II is the fortieth monarch since William the Conqueror

    67. She has visited Australia 15 times, Canada 23 times, Jamaica six times and New Zealand ten times

    68. She has sent around 100,000 telegrams to centenarians in the UK and the Commonwealth

    69. The Queen has launched 23 ships and met five astronauts at Buckingham Palace

    70. She first flew in an aeroplane in July 1945

    71. She is the only British monarch in history properly trained to change a spark plug

    72. On VE Day she and her sister slipped into the crowd to celebrate

    73. She collected clothing coupons for her wedding dress

    74. The Queen has a bank account at Coutts & Co. There is a Coutts cash-dispensing machine in Buckingham Palace

    75. The Queen celebrated her Golden Jubilee in 2002, including visiting 70 cities and towns around the UK

    76. Tony Blair was the first prime minister to be born during her reign, which has already seen nine prime ministers

    77. The Queen has sat through 91 state banquets and posed for 139 official portraits

    78. She has visited the sets of EastEnders, Coronation Street and Emmerdale

    79. The Queen introduced a new breed of dog known as the “dorgi”, when one of the corgis mated with a dachshund named Pipkin

    80. The Queen is the first British monarch to see three of her children divorce

    81. She demoted a footman for feeding her corgis whisky

    82. Prince Andrew and Prince Edward were the first children to be born to a reigning monarch since Queen Victoria had her family

    83. She is a Patron of the Royal Pigeon Racing Association. One of the Queen’s birds is called Sandringham Lightning

    84. There have been six Archbishops of Canterbury during the Queen’s reign

    85. She has sent around 100,000 telegrams to centenarians in the UK and the Commonwealth

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