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River Thames flotilla planned to mark Queen's record as longest reigning monarch

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A flotilla will sail down the River Thames to celebrate Queen Elizabeth II becoming the longest-reigning British monarch on 9 September. Members of the public are being encouraged to gather along the route to lend their support during the procession to mark 63 years and 216 days since the Queen came to the throne.

The celebrations will start at Tower Bridge at midday with a number of historic vessels, leisure cruisers and passenger boats sounding their horns for one minute before passing under the iconic bridge and making their way towards the Houses of Parliament.

TheQueen © Photo: Getty Images

Queen Elizabeth will become the longest reigning British monarch on 9 September

As the procession passes by HMS Belfast a four gun salute will sound and the fireboat Massey Shaw will shoot jets of water into the air. In scenes reminiscent of the Queen's Diamond Jubilee River Pageant in 2012, crowds are expected to line the river and cheer as boats including the Queen's row barge Gloriana and the steam ship SS George Stephenson sail by.

The flotilla will last approximately thirty minutes before coming to an end outside the Houses of Parliament with a final fanfare and 'three cheers' for the Queen, who will break the record set by her great-great grandmother Queen Victoria to become Britain's longest serving monarch.

Flotilla © Photo: Getty Images

Organisers hope the flotilla will be reminiscient of the Queen's Diamond Jubilee celebrations

Despite her unquestionable historic achievement, the 89-year-old Queen has requested no celebrations on 9 September. She is said to hope that, if the occasion is marked at all, it is done so with reverence, with no sense of triumphalism and no suggestion that what is being celebrated is Victoria's death, according to The Telegraph.

Instead, Her Majesty will spend the day travelling by steam train from Edinburgh to Tweedbank to formally open the new Borders railway with her husband Prince Philip by her side.

Following the engagement, she will return to Balmoral – the castle built for Queen Victoria by Prince Albert – just as Victoria did on the day she passed her grandfather George III's record.