Saturday, 21 April, 2018

Royal pain: Queen reveals downside of her 65-year reign

Claire Foy the crown NetflixClaire Foy dazzles as Queen Elizabeth II in'The Crown
Sammy Stanley | 14 January, 2018, 15:23

Interviewed by royal commentator Alastair Bruce, Queen Elizabeth jokes about not being able to look down while wearing the Imperial State Crown - which weighs 12lbs 13oz (1.28kgs) - as your neck would "break".

In the documentary, the Queen also talks about the quirks of being head of state - from the perils of wearing a heavy crown, to her robes sticking to a thick carpet pile.

Laughing, she adds: 'So there are some disadvantages to crowns, but otherwise they're quite important things'.

"You have to take the speech up", she said, "because if you did [look down], your neck would break".

She says: "Fortunately, my father and I have about the same sort of shaped head. I mean, it just remains itself", she said.

Queen Elizabeth, now 91, was just 25 when she became queen on the death of her father George VI in 1952, with the coronation taking place the following year. The Daily Telegraph describes it as an "unrivalled insight into events behind-the-scenes".

She also revealed that riding in an enormous golden carriage was less fun than you'd expect.

The royal family's Crown Jewels were hidden in a biscuit tin during the Second World War, a new documentary has revealed.

Another eye-opening tidbit is finding out that how much the Queen hated her ride in the four-tonne carriage taking her from Buckingham Palace to Westminster Abbey. "It's only sprung on leather, not very comfortable".

Churchill
Alex Bailey Courtesy of Netflix John Lithgow as Prime Minister Winston Churchill

A trapdoor used to access the secret area at Windsor Castle, where the Queen spent her war years for safety, still exists today.

The Queen responded: "Yes, very unwieldy".

Once there, things didn't get any easier as the during the ceremony Queen struggled with her dress which was embroidered silk with pearls, gold and silver threads.

Her Majesty said her journey to the abbey was four to five miles - halfway around London, she claimed.

She says the coach "can only go at a walking pace" and the horses "could not go any faster" as it was "so heavy".

The Coronation will be broadcast on BBC One at 8pm at Sunday.

It also features the Black Prince's Ruby, believed to have been worn by King Henry V in his helmet at the Battle of Agincourt in 1415.

Despite the intense pressure that must have been on her at the time, Bruce said Queen Elizabeth spoke of the coronation with lightness and clarity.

"Not what they're meant to do", the queen quips.

Saudi Arabia reassuring foreign investors with corruption crackdown
Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman has been easing restrictions on women in the country since he came into power last June. It prepared for the historic match by tweeting an image featuring a woman's face painted in gold, the club's colour.

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