To mark her Platinum Jubilee, here are ten things to know about Her Royal Highness, Queen Elizabeth II.
The site at which the Queen was born now hosts a Cantonese restaurant!
The Queen was born at 17 Bruton Street in Mayfair, London. The original rows of private homes which were on the street were demolished in the late 1930s and Berkeley Square House, a large office and retail building, was built in their place. A Cantonese restaurant, Hakkasan, has the same address as the Queen’s birthplace, 17 Bruton Street, but the restaurant also shares this address with a number of offices.
She really loves Corgis
The Queen’s first corgi dog, Susan, was given to her as a gift for her 18th birthday. Since then, the Queen has owned over 30 descendants of Susan until the final one, named Willow, died in 2018. The Queen is also credited with accidentally inventing the dorgi – a corgi-dachshund cross – when one of her corgis mated with Princess Margaret’s dachshund, Pipkin. The Queen now owns two corgis named Candy and Vulcan.
The Queen is a great animal lover
As well as her devotion to corgis, the Queen owns a great number of animals. These include an elephant, a jaguar, two giant turtles, and a pair of beavers, all of which were gifts from various countries around the world. These animals reside at the London Zoo. The Queen also owns around 200 racing pigeons and is famously a great horse lover. At the age of 4 she was gifted her first pony, named Peggy, by her grandfather King George V. She also breeds horses at The Royal Studs at Sandringham and has around 25 training there each season. Due to laws drawn up hundreds of years ago which state that “the reigning monarch has the right to claim ownership over all unmarked mute swans swimming in open waters”, the Queen also technically owns all the swans in the UK too.
Her handbag is incredibly important
According to some reports, the Queen owns 200 handbags! She uses her bag to send secret signals to her staff. For example, if she places the bag on the floor, she’s signalling that she needs to be saved from an awkward or uncomfortable conversation. The Queen carries fairly ordinary items in her handbag, such as a mirror, mints and reading glasses, but she only ever carries cash on Sundays so that she can donate money to her church. She’s also the only person in the UK who can drive without a driving licence, and she doesn’t require a passport when travelling the world, so those items will definitely not be found in her bag.
A lot of people have been introduced to her!
The Queen is the longest reigning monarch in Britain and the third longest reigning monarch in the world – only Louis XIV of France and King Bhumibol the Great of Thailand have reigned for longer. She’s met 13 out of the last 14 US presidents, there have been six Roman Catholic Popes since she became Queen, and she’s worked with 14 British Prime Ministers.