1 - Twice the fun
On Saturday 21 April the Queen will enjoy birthday celebrations as she turns 92. But the monarch’s official birthday will be marked on the second Saturday in June.
2 - No rain on her parade
The tradition of a monarch having two birthdays dates back to 1748. George II was born in November of that year and it was decided the weather would be too cold around that time for an annual birthday parade. So instead he celebrated an official one in the warmer month of June – a tradition carried on to this day.
3 - All guns blazing
The Queen usually spends her actual birthday privately, but the occasion is marked publicly by gun salutes in central London at midday; a 41 gun salute in Hyde Park, a 21 gun salute in Windsor Great Park and a 62 gun salute at the Tower of London.
4 - Trooping a vibrant lime green
On her official birthday, Her Majesty is joined by other members of the Royal Family at a Trooping the Colour parade which moves between Buckingham Palace, The Mall and Horseguards’ Parade, as well as a public appearance on the balcony of Buckingham Palace. This is set to be Meghan and Harry’s first appearance on the balcony as a married couple.
5 - Giving back
The Queen’s Birthday Honours List is also released on this day in June, recognising more than 1,000 people for their commitment to public service.
6 - She likes to get out
In 2006 she celebrated her 80th birthday with a walkabout in the streets outside Windsor Castle to meet well-wishers.
7 - Thanks for all the fish
Two birthdays mean two sets of presents, right? Great news all round - until someone goes and gifts you with £5,000 worth of horse semen (yes really.)
Happily, the Queen has been pretty pleased with the majority of her gifts - so much so that after receiving the singing legend that is Big Mouth Billy Bass, the head of state was so tickled she promptly bought six more and installed them at Balmoral. “The Queen thinks Billy’s a scream,” one royal insider revealed.
8 - Corgi companions
But narrowly beating a plastic fish that mimes ‘Don’t Worry, Be Happy’ was Susan the Corgi. Susan was a present for the then Princess Elizabeth’s 18th birthday back in 1944 and her first dog. Many of her Corgis since have been descendants of Susan.
9 - A Boombastic knees-up
The Royal Albert Hall will this year celebrate the Queen’s birthday with a night of music and song – including performances from Ladysmith Black Mambazo, Kylie and crooner Shaggy.