Editor’s Note: Will the Queens’s travel plans include helicopter travel?
Praying that lizards accident happens when she travels back from Balmoral for the Jubilee celebrations. 🙏
This is a very interesting time for us all to view, and then BE in…
Her Majesty is at her estate in Aberdeenshire to recharge her batteries ahead of four days of events to mark her 70 years on throne from next Thursday.
It is understood the Queen arrived at her private Scottish home last night. She usually visits Scotland at this time of year.
The monarch has attended a number of high-profile engagements in recent weeks despite her ongoing mobility problems and it is understood she is now pacing herself before the national events start.
Palace sources said recently that they thought it was a sensible idea for the 96-year-old to have some ‘down time’ in a Balmoral break that is part of the ‘sensible pacing’ of her diary.
Balmoral has had a number of adaptations in recent years, including her Craigowan Lodge, which was fitted with a wheelchair-friendly lift in 2021.
Her trip to Scotland came days after she debuted her new royal golf buggy at the Chelsea Flower Show. The monarch beamed with delight as she toured the stands of the world famous horticultural extravaganza. She also opened the Elizabeth Line and attended her beloved Royal Windsor Horse Show.
Thursday June 2
10am – The Queen’s Birthday Parade – Trooping the Colour – begins.
10.30am – Members of the royal family leave Buckingham Palace for the parade ground.
The military spectacle will be followed by a balcony appearance by the Queen, it is hoped, plus key royals including the Cambridge children, to watch a special flypast.
9.25pm – Members of the royal family arrive to watch the lighting of the principal beacon at the palace – a 21-metre tall Tree of Trees sculpture.
More than 3,000 beacons are being lit across the UK and the Commonwealth.
Friday June 3
11am – The royal family begin to arrive at the service of thanksgiving in St Paul’s Cathedral.
12.25pm – Members of the royal family afterwards attend a Guildhall reception hosted by the Lord Mayor.
Saturday June 4
5.30pm – The Epsom Derby race takes place. The Queen and her family are expected to head to the racecourse on Derby Day, where the monarch is due to be greeted with a guard of honour made of up to 40 of her past and present jockeys.
7.40pm – Members of the royal family arrive at the BBC’s Platinum Party at the Palace concert.
8pm-10.30pm – The open-air concert in front of the palace, featuring stars including Queen + Adam Lambert, Alicia Keys, Duran Duran and Diana Ross, is broadcast live on BBC One.
Sunday June 5
Street parties and Big Jubilee Lunches are staged across the country
2.30pm-5pm – The Jubilee Pageant takes place in central London, with a 3km carnival procession featuring a cast of thousands including puppets and celebrities and tributes to the seven decades of the Queen’s reign. It will move down The Mall and past the palace.
The finale will feature Ed Sheeran performing, and the singing of the national anthem in front of the Queen’s official residence.
The exclusive Danish-built electric vehicle – prices start at £20,000 for a six-seater model – was bought by the Queen privately earlier this year to help with her ongoing mobility problems, but had not been seen in public before.
It was transported from Windsor Castle to the grounds of the Royal Hospital Chelsea in anticipation of her arrival.
And after being driven from her Berkshire residence to west London in an official Range Rover, the 96-year-old monarch transferred to the buggy in order to tour the stands – with a palace chauffeur, sporting a peaked cap and stern expression, at the wheel. Her lady-in-waiting hopped on the back.
Her presence – and clear delight – at making such a ‘hardy perennial’ in the royal calendar was greeted with cheers by well-wishers and bodes well for next week’s Platinum Jubilee celebrations.
Sources have indicated that now the buggy has been seen in public for the first time, the elderly monarch – who has been increasingly using a stick in public – will be more inclined to use it for public engagements that involve walking and physical exertion.
Earlier this year the Queen candidly admitted during an audience at Windsor that she was having trouble moving.
Over the last eight months she has been forced to cancel a string of public engagements, including the State Opening of Parliament – due to her ill-health and increasing infirmity. She clearly would not have been up to the taxing walk around the extensive Chelsea showgrounds.
But, dressed in a ‘pink lemonade’-coloured coat and ivory dress by Stuart Parvin, with her familiar white gloves, the Queen looked to be in high spirits.
Asked about the buggy, a palace spokesman said: ‘Adjustments have been made for the Queen’s comfort.’
Instead she had a ‘wheely’ grand tour seated next to the President of the Royal Horticultural Society, Keith Weed, who gave her a running commentary about the show gardens and displays.
She appeared animated as she spoke to designers and plant experts, even joking at one point about the appalling weather in her Coronation year.
During her tour she stopped at the Hands Off Mangrove garden by Grow2Know, which aims to highlight global deforestation and racial injustice. How long did it take to create, she asked co-designer Danny Clarke. ‘Two and a half years,’ he replied. ‘Covid helped!’ she laughed.
The Queen also spoke to the renowned clematis grower Raymond Evison. As she was introduced by Weed, she said: ‘We wouldn’t have any clematis if it wasn’t for him!’
Towards the end of her tour the Queen was shown her three ‘signatures’, special pieces of floral artwork commissioned by the RHS and signed by the Queen.
As well as the new one marking her Platinum Jubilee and one from her Golden Jubilee, there was a third from 1953, the year of her Coronation.
While the two later ones showed a profusion of blooms, the 1953 one just featured roses and thistles.
Fiona Davison, head of libraries and exhibitions at the RHS, said: ‘She remarked that it was quite sparse, and said, ‘Possibly because nothing much was growing in 1953!’’
Davison added: ‘The collection goes back to Queen Charlotte in 1816. The Queen is the only monarch to have signed more than one royal autograph.’