53 members of the Royal Family attended a national service of Thanksgiving at St Paul’s Cathedral on Friday morning to celebrate The Queen’s life as her official 90th birthday gets underway this week.
The Queen, who was wearing an Angela Kelly designed primrose yellow coat, dress and hat, attended the service with her husband Prince Philip, who turned 95-years-old today.
At the service, Prime Minister David Cameron read from the Bible, and broadcaster, Sir David Attenborough, gave a reading which he and Paddington Bear author, Michael Bond, specially prepared for the service.
The service marks the beginning of three days of special events to mark the Queen’s official birthday celebrations.
The Archbishop of Canterbury, Justin Welby, led the service at St Paul’s, while senior politicians, diplomats and governors-generals, who represent the Queen in the Commonwealth are in attendance.
53 members of the Royal Family were in attendance, including Her Majesty and Prince Philip, making it the largest gathering of royals in many years.
The Earl and Countess of Wessex and The Duke of York were the first senior royals to arrive at St Paul’s. They were soon followed by the Princess Royal, and her husband, Vice Admiral Sir Timothy Laurence.
Arriving just before the Queen were the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge, Prince Harry and the Prince of Wales & Duchess of Cornwall.
The Duchess of Cambridge was wearing a coat by Catherine Walker and a hat by Jane Taylor.
Among the guests who were invited to speak was broadcaster Clare Balding. She was seemed appropriate to say a few words representing the sport of horse racing – a passion of the Queen’s.
90-year-old Hilda Price also gave a short speech. She was born on the same day as Her Majesty – April 21st 1926.
On Saturday, the celebrations continue as the annual Trooping the Colour Parade will be held in Horse Guards Parade.
Afterwards, the Royal Family will make their annual appearance on the balcony of Buckingham Palace, where they will watch an RAF flypast.
On Sunday, the Patron’s Lunch will attract 10,000 guests to the Mall outside of Buckingham Palace where they will take part in a huge street party. Tickets, which cost £150 per person, are being allocated through a ballot system and will see thousands of people will join guests from more than 600 charities of which The Queen is patron.
The Queen’s grandson Peter Philips organised the event for his grandmother who is said to be “very touched” by the country’s affection of her.