11 May 2021, United Kingdom, London: Queen Elizabeth II delivers what is known as the “Queen’s Speech” from the throne in the House of Lords at the Palace of Westminster, as she outlines the government’s legislative programme for the coming session during the State Opening of Parliament. Photo: Chris Jackson/PA Wire/dpa

Britain is celebrating Queen Elizabeth II’s Platinum Jubilee, her 70th year on the throne, with a huge dollop of pomp and pageantry.

The celebration began with a military parade in London, Trooping the Colour, with 1,400 troops in bearskin caps marching to honor the queen’s formal birthday.

Following an 82-gun salute, the queen will be joined by members of the British royal family on the balcony of Buckingham Palace to watch a military flyover.

Many expect this will be the last big bash for the 96-year-old queen, Britain’s longest-reigning monarch. And even those who are lukewarm toward the House of Windsor have embraced the special four-day holiday weekend. Brits are ready to put the pandemic behind them and party.

Following is a timeline of the queen’s life and reign:

April 21, 1926 – Elizabeth was born at 17 Bruton St, London, and christened on May 29 that year in the private chapel at Buckingham Palace.

Dec. 11, 1936 – She became heir apparent, aged 10, when her uncle Edward VIII abdicated and her father George VI became king.

Nov. 20, 1947 – She married navy lieutenant Philip Mountbatten, a Greek Prince, at London’s Westminster Abbey. They had four children: Prince Charles (born in 1948), Princess Anne,(1950), Prince Andrew (1960) and Prince Edward (1964).

February 1952 – Princess Elizabeth and her husband Prince Philip, set out on a tour of Africa and Asia in place of her ailing father, King George VI. News of the king’s death reaches her in Kenya on Feb. 6, meaning she is the first sovereign in more than 200 years to accede to the throne while abroad.

June 2, 1953 – Queen Elizabeth is crowned at Westminster Abbey in the first televised coronation service.

Nov. 24, 1953 – The Queen’s first Commonwealth tour begins covering a distance of 43,618 miles.

1970 – During a visit to New Zealand, the queen introduces the “walkabout”, a meet-the-people tactic for royal tours.

1977 – The queen marks her Silver Jubilee – 25 years as monarch – with a tour of Commonwealth countries and lavish celebrations in Britain.

1981 – Prince Charles marries Lady Diana Spencer in a glittering ceremony.

1982 – Charles and Diana’s first child, Prince William, is born on June 21. Prince Harry is born two years later.

1986 – Prince Andrew marries the high-spirited publishing executive Sarah Ferguson, known as “Fergie”. The couple become the Duke and Duchess of York.

1991 – The queen tours the United States and becomes the first monarch to address Congress.

1992 – Her 40th year on the throne, which she calls her ‘annus horribilis’ (horrible year), is marked by marital upsets and public dissent.

  • Andrew and Sarah separate. Anne divorces Mark Phillips.
  • In November, Windsor Castle is badly damaged by fire. The queen agrees to pay income tax.
  • In December, Charles and Diana announce their separation.

1995 – In March, the queen makes the first address by a British monarch to a South African parliament since 1947.

In December, Buckingham Palace confirms the queen has written to Charles and Diana urging them to divorce.

1996 – In August, Charles and Diana are divorced.

1997 – On August 31, Diana and her millionaire companion Dodi al-Fayed are killed when their car crashes while being chased through Paris by photographers on motorcycles. The queen and the royal family are criticised for their reserved response.

In November, large crowds greet the queen and Philip as they mark their golden wedding anniversary. In an unusually frank speech, the queen acknowledges that monarchies survive only through public support. read more

Feb. 9, 2002 – The queen’s sister, Princess Margaret, dies at the age of 71 after a life of glamour and heartbreak.

March 30 – Queen Elizabeth, the Queen Mother, dies at Windsor Castle aged 101.

June 1-4 – Four days of nationwide celebrations mark the queen’s Golden Jubilee.

2005 – Son and heir Prince Charles marries Camilla Parker Bowles at a civil ceremony in Windsor.

April 29, 2011 – the queen attends the wedding of her grandson Prince William and Kate Middleton, estimated to have been watched by about 2 billion people worldwide.

May – Queen makes four-day state visit to Ireland, the first by a British monarch since Ireland won its independence from London in 1921.

2012 – The diamond jubilee to mark her 60th year on the throne sees four days of celebrations in June along with a nationwide tour. A million people gather for a pageant on River Thames, and millions more attend street parties.

2013 – Prince William’s wife Kate gives birth to son Prince George. Their second child, Princess Charlotte is born in 2015 and their younger brother Prince Louis is born in 2018.

June 23-26, 2014 the queen embarks on what was her last foreign state visit to Germany.

On Sept. 9, at about 5.30 p.m. UK time, Elizabeth becomes the nation’s longest-reigning monarch overtaking her great-great-grandmother Queen Victoria.

April 21, 2016 – Elizabeth celebrates her 90th birthday, the first British monarch to reach such a milestone.

Aug. 2 , 2017 – Husband Philip bows out of public life after 65 years of supporting his wife.

Nov. 20 – Elizabeth and Philip celebrate their 70th wedding anniversary with a private party at Windsor Castle.

2018 – The queen’s grandson Prince Harry marries Meghan Markle, a divorced U.S. actress from Los Angeles, at a star-studded wedding at Windsor Castle.

October, 2019 – A family row between William and Harry becomes public, with the younger prince confirming the rumours of a rift.

Nov. 15 – Prince Andrew gives a disastrous interview to BBC TV on in an attempt to draw a line under a sex scandal. Days later he is forced to step down from royal duties over his links to the disgraced U.S. financier Jeffrey Epstein, who was jailed in 2008 for child sex offences.

January, 2020 – Harry and Meghan announce they will no longer be working members of the royal family. They move to Los Angeles in March.

April 5 – The queen makes only the fifth special televised broadcast of her reign to rally the nation amid the COVID-19 outbreak.

April 9, 2021 – Prince Philip, the queen’s husband of 73 years, dies peacefully aged 99 at Windsor Castle.

Oct. 20 – the queen spends a night in hospital for the first time in years for what Buckingham Palace termed “preliminary investigations”.

Nov. 30 – Barbados becomes a republic, meaning the queen is now the head of state of just 15 realms.

Jan 13, 2022 – Buckingham Palace says Prince Andrew has been stripped of his military links and royal patronages and will no longer be known as “His Royal Highness” as he defends a U.S. lawsuit brought by Virginia Giuffre who said the royal sexually abused her when she was a teenager.

Feb. 6 – Queen marks her 70th year on the throne, using the occasion to give her blessing to Charles’s second wife Camilla being called Queen Consort when he becomes king.

Feb. 15 – Prince Andrew pays an undisclosed sum to settle the U.S. lawsuit, but admits no wrongdoing.

Feb. 20 – The queen tests positive for COVID-19 and is said to be suffering from mild cold-like symptoms. She soon returns to official duties.

Source: Reuters

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