On 8th September 2022, Queen Elizabeth II, the United Kingdom’s (UKs) or Britain’s longest-serving monarch, passed away at Balmoral Castle in Scotland at 96 years after reigning for 70 years.
- Elizabeth II became Queen on the death of her father King George VI on 6th February 1952.
- Her reign of 70 years was 7 years longer than that of Queen Victoria and thus she became the longest reigning queen of the UK.
i.She worked to rebuild Britain that lost its empire in the war and transformed from industrial powerhouse to uncertain 21st century society.
ii.She headed the 54-nation Commonwealth, built around Britain and its former colonies.
iii.She has appointed 15 prime ministers, from Winston Churchill to Liz Truss over her reign.
iv.Lastly, she presided at a ceremony at Balmoral Castle to accept the resignation of Boris Johnson as prime minister and appoint Truss as his successor in September 2022.
- The plan to deal with the death of the head of state in Britain was termed Operation London Bridge.
- The plan to deal with the Queen’s death in Scotland was codenamed “Operation Unicorn”, named after the national animal of Scotland.
- These protocols are actually a detailed script for key logistical matters and procedures, including the funeral procession.
i.In 1940, Elizabeth made her 1st public broadcast, when she was 14, as a Princess to children who evacuated to the countryside or overseas during world war II.
ii.In 1953, Queen Elizabeth was crowned at Westminster Abbey in the first televised coronation service and her 1st Commonwealth tour begins covering a distance of 43,618 miles.
iii.In 1991, the Queen toured the United States (US) and became the 1st monarch to address Congress.
iv.In 1995 the Queen made the 1st address by a British monarch to a South African parliament since 1947.
v.The year 2012 marks her 60 years (diamond jubilee) of her reign and in 2022 she becomes the longest serving monarch of Britain.
Prince Charles Becomes the King of Britain after Queen Elizabeth
With the death of Queen Elizabeth, her son Prince Charles has become king of the United Kingdom (UK) and 14 other colonies.
- The new King, Prince Charles (73 years) will officially be known as King Charles III and is the oldest monarch to take the throne in the history of Britain’s reign.
Life of Prince Charles:
i.Unlike his predecessors educated by private tutors, Prince Charles was sent to Hill House school in West London and then to Gordonstoun, a tough boarding school in Scotland where Philip had also studied.
- He had gone to Trinity College, Cambridge, to study archaeology, physical and social anthropology but later changed to history.
ii.During his studies he was formally crowned as the Prince of Wales, the title traditionally held by the heir to the throne, at a grand ceremony in 1969 and in 1970 he became the 1st British heir to receive a degree.
iii.In 1971 he joined the armed forces, initially with the Royal Air Force and later with the Navy and ended his service in 1976.
iv.He was a polo player and also rode as a jockey in a number of competitive races and was interested in skiing, surfing and scuba diving.