The Prime Minister David Cameron has paid tribute to her Majesty the Queen on her 90th birthday, calling her “a rock of strength for our nation” and the Commonwealth.
Celebrations are underway for the Queen birthday today as she takes part in a walkabout in Windsor castle.
The Queen celebrates two birthdays, with her actual birthday falling on April 21st and her official birthday falling on a Saturday in June.
This year the celebrations of her official birthday will take place from 10-12 June.
The Prince of Wales has also recorded a radio broadcast for the Queen, which will air today, in which he read a passage from William Shakespeare’s Henry VIII. The reading is an extract from a speech by Archbishop Thomas Cranmer to King Henry VIII after the birth of the future Queen Elizabeth I.
The Queen has been married for 68 years, which is longer than any other British monarch. Her coronation was televised in 1953 to over 20 million people. During her reign there has been 12 UK Prime Ministers, seven Archbishops of Canterbury and seven Popes. She has visited more than 177 countries, racking up more than one million miles in travel. She has sat for 130 official portraits and in 2012 she became the second British monarch to celebrate a diamond jubilee. In 2015 she became the UK’s longest reigning monarch.
Gun salutes will take place around the UK today, from noon, and Cameron is expected to lead tributes to Her Majesty in the Commons.
Back in April, the Queen was joined by Prince Philip, the Prince of Wales and Duchess of Cornwall to light the first of 900 beacons across the UK to mark her birthday celebrations.
She was also presented with a birthday cake at Guildhall, which has been baked by the Great British Bake Off champion Nadiya Hussain.
The US President Barack Obama and First Lady Michelle Obama also joined the Queen for lunch at Windsor Castle.
A new photograph of the monarch with her great and great-grandchildren has been released, taken by celebrity photographer Annie Leibovitz.
The Queen’s 90th Birthday celebration timeline:
• 10 June – A national service of thanksgiving will take place at St Paul’s Cathedral
• 11 June – Trooping the Colour at Horse Guards Parade will take place
• 12 June – A street party will be hosted for 10,000 people in the Mall