Queen Elizabeth II Appears On Buckingham Palace Balcony For Platinum Jubilee Kickoff

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UPDATED 5:30 AM: The first main event of Queen Elizabeth II’s Platinum Jubilee celebrations concluded shortly after 1pm local time in London today. Eyes were on the iconic balcony at Buckingham Palace where the monarch made her first appearance at about 12:30 pm on a beautiful day one might call fit for a queen. She has rarely been seen in public of late owing to health problems in the past year. From her vantage point, she inspected the troops with the Duke of Kent as the Trooping the Colour neared its conclusion.

At just before 1pm local, the queen was joined by her family including Prince Charles, Prince William and his wife the Duchess of Cambridge and their three children, as well as several other royals. The queen’s grandson Prince Harry and his wife, Meghan, were in attendance but not seen as they watched the Trooping the Colour from the Major General’s office. They are expected at a service of thanksgiving at St Paul’s Cathedral tomorrow, as is Prince Andrew, according to reports.

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. - Credit: BBC
. - Credit: BBC

BBC

A flypast then began with aircraft from the Royal Navy and the Royal Air Force — a squadron of 15 typhoons formed a number 70 in the sky to mark the queen’s 70 years on the throne.

The Red Arrows concluded the flypast as nine Hawks streamed red, white and blue smoke — a little before 1:15pm, the queen and the rest of the royals left the balcony.

See below for more from the first day of celebrations and click here for how to watch the full Platinum Jubilee coverage in the coming days.

PREVIOUSLY, 2:56 AM PT: Queen Elizabeth II’s Platinum Jubilee celebrations are under way this morning in London with the annual Trooping the Colour parade from Buckingham Palace to Horse Guard’s Parade to celebrate the monarch’s Official Birthday. More than 1,400 soldiers, 200 horses and 400 musicians are taking part. See here for how to watch the full Platinum Jubilee coverage in the coming days.

Eyes will be on the iconic balcony at Buckingham Palace where the queen and 17 other members of the Royal Family are due to appear after Trooping the Colour. Only “working” royals and their children will be there, which excludes the Queen’s son Prince Andrew, and her grandson Prince Harry, and his wife Meghan, the Duchess of Sussex. Andrew stepped down in the wake of a sex assault civil court case in the U.S. while Harry and Meghan withdrew from their royal roles in 2020 and now live in the States.

Platinum Jubilee: Her Majesty The Queen Remains The World’s Biggest Star

However Harry and Meghan, with their children, will reportedly be at the event today, watching the parade from the Major General’s Office, which overlooks the grounds. It is not known what other celebrations they will attend.

A spokesperson for the couple previously said, “Prince Harry and Meghan, the Duke and Duchess of Sussex are excited and honoured to attend the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee celebrations this June with their children.”

. - Credit: AP
. - Credit: AP

AP

Prince George, Princess Charlotte and Prince Louis arrived in a carriage with their mother, the Duchess of Cambridge, and the Duchess of Cornwall. Seen inspecting the troops on horseback were Princess Anne, Prince William and his father Prince Charles.

In the UK, the BBC is showcasing the events while ABC News is covering for the U.S. Good Morning America has featured special coverage all week and will broadcast special editions live from London. French news television is also covering with various other programming spread across other channels.

In total, there are four days’ worth of events featuring such stars as Diana Ross, Queen and Adam Lambert, a pre-recorded set from Elton John; and presenters including David Attenborough, David Beckham and Julie Andrews.

Britons will be enjoying additional day’s holiday from today to Sunday, while huge street parties planned across the UK.

Buckingham Palace released a message from the queen this morning:

The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge this morning tweeted their excitement:

To mark the beginning of the celebration weekend, a new portrait of The Queen has been released:

London Mayor Sadiq Khan and French President Emmanuel Macron sent their congratulations:

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