It’s 7 o’clock this Thursday, June 2nd. The Mall, the driveway to Buckingham Palace, the site of British monarchical celebrations, is already well filled. Hundreds of Crown fans rolled out the Union Jacks, unfolded the camping seats and pulled out the chips, to be in the first boxes of the Trooping the Color, the traditional military parade marking the Queen’s official birthday, which this year marks the opening of the Platinum Jubilee, the celebrations of the seventieth anniversary of Queen Elizabeth II’s reign, scheduled for June 5. This is the first time that a British monarch has achieved such longevity on the throne.
Louise, Wendy and John arrived the day before in the Midlands and moved as close as possible to Buckingham Palace. Leaning heavily, one sees the famous balcony, where the 96-year-old queen is supposed to make an appearance at the end of the ceremony. “We all belong.” Trooping the Color, but this one is very special, it’s the opportunity of a lifetime, ” says Wendy, wearing a Union Jack top. His buddy, John, is also a Windsor fan. “I even attended Diana and Charles’ wedding in 1981 at St. Paul’s Cathedral. I saw everything, I had a great place. »
At 96, the queen has “Mobility problems”, Buckingham explains. She no longer travels without her cane, and her public appearances have become increasingly rare since the death of her husband, Prince Philip, in April 2021. She had to delegate care to Prince Charles, her eldest son and future king. to pronounce the Queen Speech, on May 10, a speech launching the parliamentary session in Westminster, considered one of its main constitutional prerogatives. And on Friday, June 3, she is not expected to attend the special jubilee service at St. Paul’s Cathedral. Crowned on February 6, 1952, the day of the death of her father, King George VI, the Queen continues, however, to hold weekly hearings with the Prime Minister (often by telephone) and to read the “state papers.” , official documents transmitted daily by the Prime Minister’s Office and the Foreign Office.
See the queen “one last time”
But on the Mall, the feeling that the second Elizabethan era is coming to an end (the first lasted from 1558 to 1603) is perceptible. Just like the marks of respect for the sovereign, almost general. “There have been many scandals in the royal family, but the queen has never taken a single wrong step. She is a figure who embodies the continuity and unity of our country. We won’t see her for a very long time, ” already regrets Sarah James, a young woman who also came from the Midlands with her husband and their two little girls, dressed in dresses in the colors of the national flag. Many families are present, many children are waiting in the sun, hoping to see the royal family pass by.
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