The Queen has sent a poignant message to mark her Official Birthday, paying tribute to those who have been affected by a series of tragic events in Manchester and London.
This is the first time Her Majesty has released a statement on her Official Birthday, which shows the significance of the past few weeks and the impact they had on her personally.
”Today is traditionally a day of celebration. This year, however, it is difficult to escape a very’ sombre national mood. In recent months, the country has witnessed a succession of terrible tragedies.
As a nation, we continue to reflect and pray for all those who have been directly affected by these events. During recent visits in Manchester and London, I have been profoundly struck by the immediate inclination of people throughout the country to offer comfort and support to those in desperate need.
Put to the test, the United Kingdom has been resolute in the face of adversity. United in our sadness, we are equally determined, without fear or favour, to support all those rebuilding lives so horribly affected by injury and loss.”
The message comes as the Queen joins the country as it mourns victims of the Grenfell Tower fire, which has killed 30 people and injured many more.
Her Majesty will celebrate her official birthday with Trooping the Colour, a traditional ceremony that dates back to 1748. She will proceed in a carriage alongside the Duke of Edinburgh from Buckingham Palace, along The Mall to Horse Guard’s Parade and will inspect the troops. The Prince of Wales, the Princess Royal and the Duke of Cambridge will be on horseback.
The event which attracts huge turnout from the public will see the participation of over 1400 parading soldiers, 200 horses and 400 musicians.
Once the monarch returns to Buckingham Palace, she will be joined by other members of the royal family to watch a fly-past from the palace’s balcony. It is expected that Prince George and Princess Charlotte will make an appearance this year.
In addition to Trooping the Colour, there will be a 41-gun salute in Hyde Park, a 62-gun salute at the Tower of London and a 11-gun salute in Windsor Park.