The Queen is just 19 days away from becoming the longest-reigning monarch in British history, overtaking great-great-grandmother Queen Victoria.
Reliable records show Queen Victoria’s reign spanning from 2.12am on 20th June 1837 to 6.30pm on 22nd January 1901, a total of 23,226 days, 16 hours, 18 minutes!
The time of Queen Elizabeth’s accession however is slightly more obscure to calculate, as George VI had died in his sleep. Best estimates suggest he died around midnight on 6th February 1952.
Palace officials have been keen to stress that the momentous date will pass without celebration for The Queen, with official plans being made to focus efforts on Her Majesty’s 90th birthday instead next year.
Despite this, an official appearance will be made by The Queen on the day of the record being broken as she and the Duke of Edinburgh board a steam train from Edinburgh Waverley Station in Scotland to Newtongrange and then Tweedbank as part of the train’s historic journey along the longest domestic railway to be built in the UK in over one hundred years. The Queen will be joined by the First Minister of Scotland Nicola Sturgeon among other officials.
Meanwhile, plans for Her Majesty’s 90th birthday celebrations continue to take shape. Led by a service of thanksgiving at St Paul’s Cathedral around The Queen’s birthday weekend in June, and with other events yet to be announced later this year, the occasion will be one of national celebration in the UK and also around the Commonwealth.
The Queen’s record-breaking day on 9th September will be the latest in a long line of achievements of longevity for Her Majesty. In 2007, she became the oldest Monarch in British history (a record also taken from Queen Victoria) as well as holding the record as the longest-married Monarch.
This year also, with the death of the Saudi Arabian king, Queen Elizabeth became the oldest-reigning Monarch in the world.
And, by the end of this year, The Queen will be the 46th longest-reigning Monarch in world history. If Her Majesty reached her Platinum Jubilee in 2022 (aged 95) she will then be the 20th longest-reigning in world history.
photo credit: Number 10