The Queen's 89th birthday: 15 facts about the monarch

The Queen celebrates her 89th birthday on Tuesday 21 April. To honour Her Majesty's birthday, HELLO! Online has gathered 15 facts about the long-serving monarch.

1. The Queen was born at 17 Bruton Street in Mayfair, London at 2:40am. Just four weeks later the royal was christened on 29 May 1926 in the private chapel at Buckingham Palace. She is the fortieth monarch since William the Conqueror obtained the crown of England.


Her Majesty the Queen turns 89 on Tuesday

2. On 6 February 1952, the then Princess Elizabeth was in Kenya for an official visit when news broke of her father King George VI's death, which meant she was now Queen. A year later on June 2, 1953, her coronation took place with a service at Westminster Abbey, becoming the first coronation to be televised.

3. In November 1947, Elizabeth married The Duke of Edinburgh at Westminster Abbey, which would become the same wedding venue for her grandson Prince William's wedding to the Duchess of Cambridge in 2011. Elizabeth and Philip went on to have four children: Prince Charles, Princess Anne, Prince Andrew and Prince Edward.

Elizabeth and the Duke of Edinburgh married at Westminster Abbey in 1947

4. The Queen, joined by Prince Philip, took part in the first "royal walkabout" during a visit to Australia and New Zealand in 1970. The monarch decided to introduce this so she and her husband could meet as many people as possible, and ever since it has been a royal tradition followed by the family.

5. Her Majesty has visited the sets of many British soaps including Coronation Street, EastEnders and Emmerdale.

6. She became the first member of the royal family to be awarded a gold disc after selling 100,000 copies of the CD of the Party at the Palace.

The royal couple, pictured with Prince Charles and Princess Anne, have four children together

7. Since becoming Queen in 1952, Her Majesty has visited Edinburgh nearly every year, taking up residence in the Palace of Holyroodhouse during Holyrood Week.

8. The monarch usually spends her actual birthday in April privately. However the occasion is marked publicly by gun salutes in Central London at midday. This includes a 41-gun salute in Hyde Park, a 21-gun salute in Windsor Great Park and a 62-gun salute at the Tower of London.

9. Always one to embrace the modern era, the Queen was amongst the first to offer congratulations when astronauts landed on the moon in 1969, saying: "On behalf of the British people I salute the skill and courage which have brought Man to the moon. May this increase the knowledge and well-being of mankind."

The Queen's coronation took place in 1953, one year after her father died

10. The Queen has given over 80,000 Christmas puddings to her staff, continuing the custom of King George V and King George VI. In addition, Her Majesty gives all her staff a gift at Christmas time.

11. At the age of 88 last year, Her Majesty sent out her first tweet ever during an engagement at the Science Museum in London. The Queen used her office's personal Twitter account and wrote: "It is a pleasure to open the Information Age exhibition today at the @ScienceMuseum and I hope people will enjoy visiting. Elizabeth R."

12. In her spare time, the popular monarch is a keen photographer, a hobby she shares with her son Prince Andrew and granddaughter-in-law the Duchess of Cambridge.

The Duchess of Cambridge and Queen Elizabeth are both fans of photography

13. As part of her royal duties, the Queen has opened Parliament every year except 1959 and 1963, when she was pregnant with Prince Andrew and Prince Edward respectively.

14. At the time of her birth, it was not expected she would be Queen as her father was not expected to become King, however after King Edward VIII's abdication and her father's new position as King, she became first-in-line.

15. Her full title as Queen is "Her Majesty Elizabeth the Second, by the Grace of God of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland, and of Her other Realms and Territories Queen, Head of the Commonwealth, Defender of the Faith".

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