Diamond Jubilee: Queen 'humbled' by celebrations


Queen Elizabeth II: ''It has touched me deeply to see so many thousands of families, neighbours and friends celebrating together''

The Queen has called her Diamond Jubilee "a humbling experience", saying she had been "touched deeply" by seeing so many people celebrating together.

In a message to the nation, she thanked all those who organised the events.

Festivities culminated in an appearance by the senior royals on the Buckingham Palace balcony in front of huge crowds to watch an RAF flypast.

But the Queen's consort, Prince Philip, was absent from her side as he remains in hospital with a bladder infection.

The Earl and Countess of Wessex visited the Duke of Edinburgh on Tuesday afternoon.

Afterwards, Prince Edward said: "He's feeling better." The countess added: "He's in good spirits; he's on good form."

'Happy atmosphere'

The Queen's message was broadcast on television and radio across the UK and Commonwealth.

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As one who knows the Queen put it to me once - you don't want a monarch who fizzes like a Catherine wheel ”

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"The events that I have attended to mark my Diamond Jubilee have been a humbling experience," she said.

"It has touched me deeply to see so many thousands of families, neighbours and friends celebrating together in such a happy atmosphere.

"But Prince Philip and I want to take this opportunity to offer our special thanks and appreciation to all those who have had a hand in organising these Jubilee celebrations.

"It has been a massive challenge, and I am sure that everyone who has enjoyed these festive occasions realises how much work has been involved."

She added: "I hope that memories of all this year's happy events will brighten our lives for many years to come.

"I will continue to treasure and draw inspiration from the countless kindnesses shown to me in this country and throughout the Commonwealth. Thank you all."

Commonwealth leaders

The Queen will continue to mark her Diamond Jubilee on Wednesday after four days of public celebrations.


After Monday's party, Tuesday was a more sedate tribute to the Queen.

The Service of Thanksgiving at St Paul's Cathedral was a celebration of 60 years of loyal service and commitment.

In his sermon, the Archbishop of Canterbury spoke of the Queen's "years of utterly demanding yet deeply joyful service". His words are a reflection of the mood throughout the Jubilee celebrations.

Thousands again descended on central London for the ceremonial part of the weekend's festivities - especially the Royal Family's appearance on the balcony of Buckingham Palace.

I have spoken to many people over the past few days about how they view the Queen. Some have been royalists, some far from it. But nearly all have held the Queen in high regard.

The day's events have been marked though by the absence of the Duke of Edinburgh. For 60 years he has been at the Queen's side at almost every ceremonial occasion. On Tuesday, she was without him.

She will attend a lunch for the anniversary at Marlborough House in Pall Mall in central London with Commonwealth leaders, including prime ministers, governor generals and high commission representatives.

The Queen had been due to be accompanied at the event by the Duke of Edinburgh.

On Tuesday, the Queen attended a thanksgiving service at St Paul's Cathedral where Archbishop of Canterbury Dr Rowan Williams paid tribute to her "lifelong dedication".

"I don't think it's at all fanciful to say that, in all her public engagements, our Queen has shown a quality of joy in the happiness of others," he said.

David Cameron, who gave a reading at the service, called her "a real inspiration".

"We have seen the country come together with a sense of celebration and unity but also tremendous resilience, resilience from people who want to celebrate despite the weather and resilience, of course, from Her Majesty - nothing stops her doing the job she does," the prime minister said.

US President Barack Obama was among those who paid tribute to her "60 extraordinary years".

In a specially recorded message he called the Queen "a steadfast ally, loyal friend and tireless leader" and said she had been "the chief source of resilience" for the unique alliance between his country and the UK throughout her reign.

In other Jubilee events on Tuesday:

  • Crowds gathered from early morning to cheer the Queen on her journey from Buckingham Palace to St Paul's
  • The congregation at the cathedral included a large representation from the government, military personnel and members of the royal household, alongside diplomats and foreign leaders
  • After the service, the Queen attended a reception at nearby Mansion House - the official residence of the Lord Mayor of London
  • The Prince of Wales and Duchess of Cornwall, the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge and Prince Harry were at a similar event at the Guildhall
  • All of the senior royals then enjoyed a lunch at Westminster Hall before embarking on a carriage procession through packed streets back to the palace
  • The day ended in an appearance by the senior royals on the palace balcony to watch a flypast by World War II aircraft and the Red arrows

Other events during the extended Jubilee weekend included a star-studded concert outside Buckingham Palace on Monday night.

Queen's procession in open-top carriage procession

At the end the Queen came on to the stage to press a diamond-shaped crystal into a pod, igniting a beacon in The Mall to mark her 60 years on the throne. It was one of more than 4,000 lit across the UK and the Commonwealth.

On Sunday, about a thousand boats took part in the Diamond Jubilee Thames River Pageant, the first of its kind for 350 years.

See all the latest Diamond Jubilee news and features at bbc.co.uk/diamondjubilee


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  • rate this

    Comment number 37.

    @33 what a load of old tosh, time to take your head out of your nether regions and read what good the monarchy has done for this country, sure there have been "blips". But the good far outweighs the bad.

  • rate this

    Comment number 36.

    I find these ill informed comments @18 @19 @14 laughable. Do people really think the Royal family live in luxury? They're not like other rich people who can do what they like with their time. They work hard - the Queen with over 400 engagements per year. She's not doing what she wants and doesn't have the time to sit back and enjoy the wealth. I wouldn't want her job (and it is a job).

  • rate this

    Comment number 35.

    As my user name suggests I am not a lefty, in fact am rather right wing, but I can not see the point of all this flag waving for someone who as keep a job for 60 years with any appraisal each year. Most of you are saying how proud you are of the monarchy and country but 90% of you would not actually defend this country. For gods sake lets take our country back instead of just giving it away.

  • rate this

    Comment number 34.

    To all those criticizing and saying it cost too much, wait till next month and see the boost to the economy. Public spending will have increased enormously at a time when people are generally not spending, so keeping the economy going, not to mention all the foreign tourists spending too.

    This kind of thing will keep this country afloat.

  • Comment number 33.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • rate this

    Comment number 32.

    What an brilliant weekend end, it was great to see all ages mixing and having a great time and what a fantastic advert for the UK.

    Having watched Coast we were inspired to visit different parts of the UK so I would imagine there are many foreign nationals who will be inspired to visit the UK . Priceless.

    Long live the politically free monarchy!

  • rate this

    Comment number 31.

    We are all humbled by the experience!!!
    The BBC coverage was appalling
    Were the performers chosen by Jimmy Young?
    The bare faced brown nose begging by most of the presenters was unbearable.
    The END is nigh !!!

  • Comment number 30.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • rate this

    Comment number 29.

    The Queen has served well, and is a great example to us all. I have definitely worked and earned everything in my life, and all of this talk of service has irked me a bit. It's not as if I (or the vast majority of hard working Britons) wouldn't have given the role just as much dedication. I also can't help feeling this institution is part of the reason our "social mobility" is still pretty low.

  • rate this

    Comment number 28.

    The Diamond Jubilee as sent out many messages

    The majority of us have regained or identity. We stand behind our Monarch this our culture and values echoed by the Queen

    It is a big NO to further EU integration. Hands of our Sovereignty

    In additon it is a way of keeping politicians in check who would want a president blair, perish the thought.

  • rate this

    Comment number 27.

    It's not like the monarchy can demand to levy taxes on you any more - that's the government :)
    Have you also forgotten the vast numbers of charities that they all support -and the money from tourism that they all bring in.
    The Royal family is part of our history, why change all that -it gives us something to be proud of -all the pomp and pagentry that no one in the world can beat

  • rate this

    Comment number 26.

    4 Minutes ago
    Yet another waste of millions of pounds by the British government on a pointless and unnecessary ceremony to promote the elite class. I guess all those homeless people, cancer sufferers, etc will just have to put up with it and be happy that the monarchy got a big party
    SO true but do you think the royals or the elite care

  • rate this

    Comment number 25.

    Well done the Queen, a dutiful and professional Head of State. Never mind the nay sayers, the monarchy is a positive aspect of our history, a part of our British past from which has evolved a judicial system, democracy and parliamentary system to be proud of.The British people should be allowed to hang on to this small harmless part of our history-everything thing else has been snatched from us.

  • rate this

    Comment number 24.

    @11 What has she done? She is 84 years old, her husband is in hospital and she hasn't stopped working, yes working, for four solid days. I wish I were that fit or dedicated. What has she done indeed!

  • rate this

    Comment number 23.

    The Queen was great but the BBC were not so great

    The BBC presenters were all elbows and personality, as though they were trying to enthuse reluctant children to take part in Blue Peter.

    Also, I suugest that the presenters are poorly informed knowing very little about the subject. Some leg work on the ground would have gleaned interesting detail. Perhaps employ journalists the next time

  • rate this

    Comment number 22.

    I see the usual suspects are complaining about out our Monarchy in their customary charming style and vocabulary.

  • rate this

    Comment number 21.

    I admire the Queen and Prince Philip but not the royal family. By all means celebrate the event (it's not an achievement!); but to spend millions in this way at this time is foolhardy.

  • Comment number 20.

    All this user's posts have been removed.Why?

  • rate this

    Comment number 19.

    Yet another waste of millions of pounds by the British government on a pointless and unnecessary ceremony to promote the elite class. I guess all those homeless people, cancer sufferers, etc will just have to put up with it and be happy that the monarchy got a big party.

  • rate this

    Comment number 18.

    I am not a monarchist and would after the present Queen like to see us end this circus act. The palaces etc do bring in money via tourism but I doubt that all the tourist come to see the queen. Surely 60 years on benifits is enough for any one person. Get a job Queenie


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