Friday, 1 June 2012

Queen Facts

I bet you didn't know....

No, silly! We're not talking about Queen the legendary rock band (although now you come to mention it, that would make a v good future blog post....), we're on about Her Majesty the Queen!

In honour of next week's diamond jubilee, we're celebrating with some weird and wonderful facts about Queen Elizabeth II. How many do you know?

Read on for the goss....

image by Agencia Brasil on WikiCommons

  1. The Queen is the first British monarch to have celebrated a Diamond Wedding Anniversary. I wonder if she'll share her secret?
  2. The Queen and The Duke of Edinburgh were married in Westminster Abbey in 1947 There were 2,000 invited guests, and 8 bridesmaids!
  3. The bride's wedding ring was made from a nugget of Welsh gold which came from the Clogau St David's mine near Dolgellau.
  4. Only Queen Victoria has reigned for longer than our current queen. She managed almost 64 years.
  5. When Prince Andrew was born in 1960, The Queen became the first reigning Sovereign to give birth to a child since Queen Victoria.
  6. The Queen is patron to more than 600 charities.
  7. The Queen's grandfather, King George V, made the first ever royal Christmas speech live on the radio in 1932.
  8. Every year, the Queen has delivered a Christmas message; except in 1969. That year, she decided the royals had been on television too much after a documentary was broadcast about them earlier in the year.
  9. The first time Queen Elizabeth made a radio broadcast was when she was just 14 years old, during the BBC's Children's Hour.
  10. Queen Elizabeth II is the fortieth monarch since William the Conqueror
  11. One of the Queen's hobbies is Scottish country dancing. When she stays at Balmoral, she hosts annual dances known as Gillies' Balls, for  staff and members of the local community.
  12. The Queen celebrates two birthdays each year: her actual birthday on 21 April and her official birthday on a Saturday in June.
  13. When one of her subjects reaches 100 years old, the Queen sends a special telegram. To date, she has sent around 100,000 telegrams in the UK and the Commonwealth, and the yearly number is steadily increasing.
  14. Apparently, Queen Elizabeth is the only British monarch that has been properly trained to change a spark plug. We're not sure how, or when, or indeed why, but it's a useful skill neverthless. 
  15. The first British Prime Minister to be born after she was crowned was Tony Blair. The Queen has seen 9 changes of Prime Minister.
  16. She has sat through 91 state banquets; let's hope the food was tasty....
  17. And she's posed for 139 official portraits.
  18. Three of the Queen's four children have divorced.
  19. She apparently once demoted a footman because he gave whisky to one of her corgis!
  20. A new breed of dog was created when one of Her Majesty's Corgi's mated with a dachshund. It was dubbed the "dorgi"!
  21. The Queen has a whopping 9 different thrones! One is at the House of Lords; two are at Westminster Abbey, and there are six in the throne room at Buckingham Palace. We wonder which is her favourite?
  22. The Queen's coronation service in 1953 was the first coronation ceremony to be televised.
  23. Her childhood nickname was "Lilibet".
  24. Queen Elizabeth made the first ever royal Transatlantic telephone call - she spoke to her parents from England as they toured America in 1927.
  25. In an effort to attempt to quell Welsh Nationalism in the 1940's and to help the people of Wales better relate to the Royal Family, Elizabeth was inducted into the Gorsedd of Bards at the National Esiteddfod in 1946.
  26. The Queen is expected to open the 2012 London Olympics at the ceremony on 27th July, and the Paralympics in August. Her father opened the London Olympics in 1948, and her great-grandfather (Edward VII) opened the London Olympics in 1908.
What are your favourite facts about Queen Elizabeth? Let us know if we've missed any!

And don't forget to come and join us for the Oakeley Arms Jubilee Garden Party on Monday 4th June. More info here

Image by JMCMurdo on sxc.hu

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