Queen's coronation details revealed in documentary

Saul Bowman
January 17, 2018

The Queen's childhood memories of her father's coronation are revealed in the hour-long documentary, with an 11-year-old Princess Elizabeth writing she thought the arches of Westminster Abbey were covered in "a sort of haze of wonder" when King George VI was crowned in 1937. "It's sort of, I suppose, the beginning of one's life, really, as a sovereign". "It is sort of a pageant of chivalry and old-fashioned way of doing things really", she says in the film.

For one, the diamond-encrusted Imperial State Crown (which she wears to official events) is *extremely* weighty (about two and a half pounds to be exact!), and requires her to look straight ahead at all times.

"This is what I do when I wear it!", she said, grabbing the crown and spinning it around to show off her favourite jewel.

"You can't lean down to read your speech". "There are disadvantages to the crowns but otherwise, they're quite important things", she said, with a smile.

Viewers have praised the Queen's underwhelmed response after she was told the crown jewels were hidden in a biscuit tin 60ft underneath Windsor Castle to keep them safe from the Nazis.

The Queen, along with her family, spent the war years at the Windsor castle for her safety.

The Monarch also spoke about her handsome coronation dress, which was embroidered in silk with pearls, and gold and silver thread.

The royal commentator told the paper how "an electric set of letters" from Sir Owen Morshead, the royal librarian, to Queen Mary, the mother of George VI, shed light on the mystery. "I mean, it just remains on'".


A spokesman for the BBC said the programme, part one of a series about the Royal Collection, would see the Dean of Westminster John Hall "reveal for the first time on camera the bottle containing the anointing oil used in The Queen's Coronation in 1953".

In an interview with Business Insider, producer Anthony Geffen said securing access to the Queen for himself and presenter Alastair Bruce was a 22-year enterprise.

But unlike most who handle the precious relic, the Queen picked it up without gloves and tossed it around with not a care in the world - doesn't she realise how expensive it is!

She seemed unimpressed and quickly said: 'Hmm, did he remember where he put them?

The occasion is the 65th anniversary of her coronation.

Queen Elizabeth II and Prince Philip after the coronation, June 1953.

When Mr Bruce remarks that it is like a ballet, with everyone knowing where to move, the Queen responds "well they jolly well ought to" after all the rehearsals.

The Coronation is screened on One at 8pm on Sunday.

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