On this day in history….1st July 1969

On this day in history : 1st July 1969 – Prince Charles is invested Prince of Wales by his mother, Queen Elizabeth II, at Caernarfon Castle, in North Wales….

Caernarfon Castle prepared for the Investiture

Prince Charles had been created the Prince of Wales on the 26th of July 1958, when he was just 9-years-old – but it was 11 years later, when he was 20, that his investiture took place…. It is a title traditionally given to the eldest son of the reigning monarch…. Prince Charles is the longest serving Prince of Wales in British history, making him the longest waiting heir ever to become monarch….

The tradition began in 1301, when King Edward I of England gave the title to his son, Prince Edward (later to become King Edward II)…. It was after deposing the last native Prince of Wales, Llewelyn ap Gruffudd, following the conquering of Wales….

Millions of people watched the investiture of Prince Charles on television and huge crowds were attracted to Caernarfon – and to the castle which had seen the investiture in 1911 of Edward VIII before him….

Image credit : Journalist Geoff Charles – National Library of Wales CC0
Image credit : Journalist Geoff Charles – National Library of Wales CC0

The centuries old custom involved the Secretary of State for Wales, who read the Letters Patent in Welsh…. The Queen then bestowed upon Charles a sword, coronet, ring, the gold rod and the kingly mantle…. Prince Charles then took his oath….

“I, Charles, Prince of Wales, do become your liege man of life and limb and of earthly worship and faith and truth I will bear unto thee to live and die against all manner of folks”….

He then gave a speech in both Welsh and English….

Image : Pinterest

On this day in history….29th February 1964

On this day in history : 29th February 1964 – The Queen’s cousin, Princess Alexandra, gives birth to a son – believed to be the first ever royal baby to be born on February the 29th….

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Princess Alexandra, June 1961 – Photo credit : Harry Pot – National Archief (Netherlands) CC BY-SA 3.0nl

Princess Alexandra gave birth at home in Richmond, Surrey; her husband, Angus Ogilvy, was with her and her mother, Princess Marina, was also at the house…. The 9lb 6oz baby boy was born at 12.15am and was a week overdue…. He was named James Robert Bruce and later christened in the chapel at Buckingham Palace…. Two years later he was to be joined by a sister, Marina….

Princess Alexandra’s baby was the first of four royal babies to be born within a matter of weeks of each other…. The Queen’s fourth child, Prince Edward, was born on the 10th of March….and her sister, Princess Margaret, had a daughter, Lady Sarah Armstrong-Jones, on the 1st of May…. Finally the Duchess of Kent had her second baby, Lady Helen Windsor, on the 28th of April….

On this day in history….23rd December 1992

On this day in history : 23rd December 1992 – A national newspaper publishes the Queen’s speech – scheduled to be aired on BBC television two days later, on Christmas Day….

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Queen’s Speech, 1992 – ‘annus horribilis’ – Image : The BBC – fair use

The source of the leak was never found – but the text for the five minute broadcast, which had been recorded at Sandringham, was spread – virtually word for word – across the centre pages of The Sun…. The newspaper insisted it had done nothing wrong and had come by the story by ‘good old-fashioned techniques’….

“1992 is not a year on which I shall look back with undiluted pleasure”…. – Her Majesty the Queen….

1992 was a difficult year for the Royal Family…. It was the year of the catastrophic fire at Windsor Castle – and the breakdown of the marriages of both Prince Charles and Prince Andrew…. From the speech came the infamous phrase used by the Queen to describe the year…. “annus horribilis”….

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Image via You Tube

Her Majesty sued The Sun and was awarded £200,000 in damages – which was immediately donated to charity…. In the following years certain changes were made surrounding the annual Christmas Queen’s Speech…. The venue was changed from Sandringham to Windsor Castle and Buckingham Palace – and the media received no information as to the speech contents until late on Christmas Eve…. In 1997 the BBC’s monopoly to televising the speech was ended by Buckingham Palace – and became shared on a yearly rotating basis with ITV…. Some believe it was a snub to the BBC – over their interview with Princess Diana in 1995…. Nowadays the Queen’s Speech can even be viewed live on social media….

On this day in history….20th November 1947

On this day in history : 20th November 1947 – Princess Elizabeth marries Lieutenant Philip Mountbatten….

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Princess Elizabeth and Philip Mountbatten on their wedding day – Fair use

The wedding took place at 10.30am in Westminster Abbey and was officiated by Geoffrey Fisher, Archbishop of Canterbury and Cyril Garbett, Archbishop of York…. Princess Elizabeth was the tenth member of the Royal Family to marry in Westminster Abbey – 2,000 guests attended the ceremony and it was broadcast by the BBC to 200 million around the World….

Princess Elizabeth had eight bridesmaids (including her sister HRH Princess Margaret) and two pageboys…. Philip, who had been made Duke of Edinburgh on the morning of the wedding, had his first cousin, David Mountbatten, the Marquess of Milford Haven, as his best man…. The wedding ring was made from a nugget of Welsh gold….

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The marriage certificate, signed by Philip, Princess Elizabeth, King George VI and Princess Marina, Duchess of Kent – General Register Office and participants at the wedding – Public domain

Princess Elizabeth’s wedding dress was designed by Sir Norman Hartnell and the Princess had to use clothing coupons in order to buy it, as rationing was still in place…. Hundreds of well-wishers sent in coupons to the Palace to help – but although the kind gesture was much appreciated all had to be returned – as it would have been illegal to use them….

The dress itself was made from duchess satin; it had a heart shaped neckline, fitted bodice, with a low v-pointed waist – the panelled skirt fell to the floor…. The dress was completed by a 15-foot silk tulle train…. Upon her feet Princess Elizabeth wore ivory duchesse satin high heeled shoes trimmed with silver and pearl buckles….and were designed by Edward Rayne…. Her jewellery consisted of two pearl necklaces; one of which had belonged to the wife of King George II and the other said to have belonged to Anne, the last Stuart Queen…. They were given to Princess Elizabeth by her father as a wedding gift….

The bridal bouquet was of white orchids, with a sprig of myrtle, a tradition started by Queen Victoria…. Afterwards the bouquet was laid upon the tomb of the Unknown Warrior – another Royal tradition….

After the ceremony a wedding breakfast was held in the Ball-Supper Room at Buckingham Palace…. One of the highlights was the wedding cake, made by McVitie and Price – with its four tiers and standing nine feet high….

On this day in history….15th November 1977

On this day in history : 15th November 1977 – Princess Anne gives birth to a son….the first royal baby in more than 500 years to be born a commoner….

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Princess Anne and baby Peter – via Pinterest

Master Peter Mark Andrew Phillips arrived in the World at 10.46 am in St. Mary’s Hospital, Paddington – less than 6 hours after Princess Anne was driven there by her husband, Captain Mark Phillips…. Their new son weighed a healthy 7lb, 9oz – and a 41-gun salute was fired from the Tower of London to celebrate and welcome the new royal baby….

In 1981 Zara was born, a sister for Peter…. Although Princess Anne is the Queen’s daughter she has no hereditary title – meaning Peter and Zara are the Queen’s only untitled grandchildren…. Reputedly Princess Anne and Capt. Mark Phillips declined an offer of a title from the Queen – which would have meant their children would receive a peerage….

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The Christening of Zara Phillips, 1981 – via Pinterest

Princess Anne and Capt. Mark Phillips divorced in 1992…. Princess Anne married Commander Timothy Laurence later the same year…. Mark Phillips remarried in 1997 and had another child, a daughter – his third, as he had also fathered one other whilst married to Princess Anne….

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Princess Anne and her children – via Pinterest