Published: Sat, January 13, 2018
World | By Paul Elliott

Queen gives rare personal account of her coronation in BBC documentary

Queen gives rare personal account of her coronation in BBC documentary

Queen Elizabeth II opened up about her own coronation in a new documentary, "The Coronation", where she discussed the downfall of wearing her Crown jewels.

The Queen has revealed that her robes got stuck in the thick gold and blue carpet, laid along Westminster Abbey's medieval floor at her Coronation, in the closest the monarch has yet come to giving a television interview. "Telling her seemed strangely odd", said royal commentator Alastair Bruce, who presents the documentary.

"Fortunately, my father and I have about the same sort of shaped head", the queen said. I mean, it just remains on. In fact, she can't even look down at her speech if she's wearing the crown to a public speaking engagement. "Because if you did, your neck would break and it (the crown) would fall off", she said while smiling.

"There are some disadvantages to crowns but, otherwise they are quite important things", the Queen added with a smile evocating her coronation on June 2, 1953, one year after her father King George VI died.

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. Not very comfortable. It can only go at walking pace.

"You have to keep your head very still", Bruce said to the Queen while looking at the Imperial State Crown and watching footage of the Coronation in 1953.

Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II (Elizabeth Alexandra Mary), is the Head of State of the UK, Canada, Australia and New Zealand.

The Queen with her maids of honour and Archbishop of Canterbury during the coronation
The Queen with her maids of honour and Archbishop of Canterbury during the coronation Credit ITV archive

But bizarrely it won't be the Queen - who spent most of the war at Windsor Castle - that reveals the biscuit tin secret, as she never knew of it herself.

Queen Elizabeth, 91, stayed at the Windsor Castle during the war from 1939 to 1945.

Despite this, Bruce was happy to shed light on exactly how momentous an occasion it must have been for the queen, calling it a "pretty challenging day for her as a 25-year-old".

The gold carriage, which was commissioned in 1760, is about 24 feet long and weighs almost four tons.

The Queen recalled: Well, I remember one moment when I was going against the pile of the carpet and I couldn't move at all.

"Yes", the Queen said.

The documentary, which airs on BBC One Sunday at 8 p.m., is part of a Royal Collection Season created between the BBC and the Royal Collection Trust that showcases details of the family's life and the collection itself.

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