A salute of arms will be heard on Thursday to mark the 96th birthday of Queen Elizabeth II, although the monarch herself was expected to mark the occasion with a little fanfare.
It was a troubled year for the British royal family, with concerns about the queen’s health and questions about the future of the monarchy.
Rounds will be fired from the Tower of London and Hyde Park in the British capital, where a military band “Happy Birthday” will also play.
The royal tradition from the 18th century also saw the monarch have his second official birthday, typically celebrated in warm weather in June.
This year’s official birthday coincides with four days of public events from 2 to 5 June to mark the 70th anniversary of the queen’s accession to the throne.
The British media reported that the queen flew by helicopter from her home in Windsor Castle, west London, to her property in the country of Sandringham in the east of England.
There, she is reportedly spending time in the cottage where her late husband Philip Philip lived after retiring from public life in 2017.
The Daily Mirror quoted an unnamed royal source who said the trip was being seen as a “positive step” due to the queen’s recent health problems.
Since falling for an unscheduled night in hospital last October, she has drastically reduced public appearances on doctor’s orders.
A back complaint and difficulty standing and walking saw her cancel a number of engagements, including recent events at the church to mark Easter.
A bout of COVID-19 in February left her “very tired and exhausted,” she told doctors and patients at Royal London Hospital during a virtual event earlier this month.
But her nephew Prince Harry told US broadcaster NBC in an interview broadcast on Wednesday that she was “in great shape” when she saw her last week.
The Queen was last seen in public at Westminster Abbey in central London on 29 March during a memorial service for Prince Philip, who died last year at the age of 99. year.
Health and succession
The forced withdrawal of the queen from public life in her Platinum Jubilee year increased attention to the succession and future of the monarchy.
Her eldest son and heir, Prince Charles, assumed more responsibilities of his mother in preparation for the throne.
Its popularity has risen in recent years, according to an Ipsos survey of more than 2,000 adults in Britain in March.
But his 43 percent approval rating is still well behind his mother (69 percent), his eldest son Prince William (64 percent) and his sister-in-law Kate Middleton (60 percent). mija).
About 42 percent of those surveyed also said they believed Charles, 73, should step down for William, who turns 40 in June.
Aside from questions about the queen’s health and succession, royals were rarely out of the front pages of newspapers due to a succession of scandals.
There was controversy last month after the queen’s unfortunate second son, Prince Andrew, supported her in the memorial service of Prince Philip.
In February, he resolved the U.S. civilian claim for sexual assault that had previously seen him removed from his honorary royal military titles and charitable roles.
The palace is said to be preparing for new revelations about royal life by Harry, who is due to publish his memoirs later this year.
The former British Army captain left the royal front line last year and went to California with his American wife Meghan Markle.
From there, the couple accused the royal family of racism, while Harry claimed that his father Charles and brother William were “trapped” in the British monarchy system.
The future of the global spread of the royal family is also far from assured.
The queen is head of state of Great Britain and 14 other Commonwealth countries around the world.
But Barbados became a republic last year and a number of other Caribbean countries, including Jamaica, have since indicated they want to follow suit.
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