On 21 April 2022, Queen Elizabeth II turned 96! Join us on a trip back through history to discover our favourite facts about the Queen.
1. Queen Elizabeth II was born at 2.40 am on 21 April 1926
Her parents were the Duke and Duchess of York, who later became King George VI and Queen Elizabeth (the Queen Mother).
2. She was crowned Queen on 2 June 1953
The coronation was watched by a TV audience of 20 million people.
3. She was the longest reigning monarch ever in Britain
Beating even Queen Victoria (her great-great-grandma!).
4. As Queen, she has been served by 16 UK Prime Ministers
Including Winston Churchill, Margaret Thatcher, and more recently, Boris Johnson and Liz Truss
5. Her favorite dogs were corgis.
She even invented a new breed of dog when her corgi mated with a dachshund belonging to her sister, Princess Margaret, creating the “dorgi”.
6. More than 30 countries have banknotes with the portrait of Elizabeth
The portrait of Queen Elizabeth II has appeared on banknotes in every continent except Antarctica. The first country to feature the queen on bills was Canada, which issued a banknote in 1935 featuring her as an 8-year-old.
7. The Queen had two birthdays
Her actual birthday – 21 April – and her official birthday, which was held on a Saturday in June – when the weather’s better!
8. The Queen’s birthplace is now a fancy Cantonese restaurant
The Hakkasan restaurant has the same 17, Bruton Street address. But so does an adjacent stretch of boarded-up offices. There’s also a glass-fronted, corporate entrance and reception area in the same block. The place where the queen was born is now to the side of the offices in Berkeley Square House.
9. The Queen first sent an email in 1976
… and published her first Instagram post in 2019!
10. She has many hobbies
Including horse riding, pigeon racing, and football – she was even an Arsenal supporter!
11. Queen Elizabeth became a homeowner at just six years old
When the people of Wales gifted her a house on the grounds of Windsor’s Royal Lodge. Named Y Bwthyn Bach, it means “little cottage”.
12. Even a monarch can sometimes go undercover
On a recent low-key trip to Scotland, she met some American tourists while walking. When the tourists asked if she lived locally, she mentioned that she had a house nearby, and when asked if she’d ever met the Queen she simply pointed at her security and said, “No, but he has!”
13. She was the only person in the UK allowed to drive without a license