The Queen will mark her 95th birthday this week in a different way following Prince Philip's death

Megan Sutton
·2-min read
Photo credit: WPA Pool - Getty Images
Photo credit: WPA Pool - Getty Images

It’s undoubtedly an extremely sad time for the Queen, who is in mourning after the funeral of her husband of 74 years, Prince Philip, on Saturday.

The monarch is about to experience another poignant event, her first birthday following the Duke of Edinburgh’s death.

Queen Elizabeth turns 95 on Wednesday (21 April), however the day will be marked in a different way than usual due to the royal family observing an official mourning period until 23 April.

Explaining the mourning period on the Royal Family website, a paragraph reads:

“It is The Queen's wish that the Royal Family will observe two weeks of Royal Mourning starting on Friday 9 April. Royal Mourning will be observed by Members of the Royal Family and their Households, together with troops committed to Ceremonial Duties. During this period, Members of the Royal Family will continue undertaking engagements appropriate to the circumstances. Mourning bands will be worn where appropriate.”

As well as mourning bands, members of the family will be wearing black clothing.

Photo credit: WPA Pool - Getty Images
Photo credit: WPA Pool - Getty Images

Traditionally, the Queen’s birthday has been marked by gun salutes in Hyde Park and the Tower of London, however these have been cancelled for the second year running due to the pandemic.

The cancelling of the salutes wasn’t the only alteration to the Queen’s birthday plans last year as the bells of Westminster Abbey, which normally ring in honour of her April birthday, stayed silent.

This year, the royal family’s social media channels will likely be the only commemoration of the Queen turning 95. It’s now customary for official accounts to share photographs and commentary to mark special occasions like birthdays.

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Away from royal protocol, the Queen could, of course, celebrate her birthday privately in accordance with the Government’s roadmap out of lockdown.

In England, outdoor gatherings, including in gardens, are allowed with up to six people. To make things easier for larger families, two households of any size can meet. A support bubble counts as one household.

Looking ahead to the Queen’s official birthday, which is celebrated in June, we know that will be different this year, too.

The annual Trooping the Colour parade, which has traditionally seen key royals join on the balcony of Buckingham Palace in front of huge crowds for a military flypast, will not go ahead in its standard form for a second year running.

In a statement, Buckingham Palace said options for a parade in the quadrangle at Windsor Castle are being considered.

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