WINDSOR – Today Queen Elizabeth turns 87. She was born on April 21, 1926 and took up the throne on 6 February 1952.
She is expected to celebrate with her family at Windsor Castle.
Buckingham Palace reportedly said the Queen was taking her birthday weekend off to spend it with her family as well as to enjoy her favourite past-time - horseracing.
Traditional gun salutes will be fired in London on Monday.
DID YOU KNOW?
- The monarch has two birthdays – her actual birthday is celebrated on April 21 and her official one in June, which is marked with the Trooping the Colour parade also known as The Queen's Birthday Parade, which is due to take place on June 15 this year.
- The Queen's “Official Birthday” is selected to coincide with a high probability of good weather in the Northern Hemisphere for outdoor ceremonies.
- Despite her age, the Queen continues to conduct hundreds of public engagements, totalling 425 during her Diamond Jubilee year last year.
- It has been estimated that Elizabeth II has carried out more than 30,000 public engagements as Queen.
- Queen Elizabeth II is the oldest serving monarch in British history, but as she begins her 62nd year on the throne, she is yet to be the longest serving.
- Queen Victoria remains the longest serving monarch, ruling for 63 years and seven months, but if Queen Elizabeth remains on the throne on 9 September 2015 she would take her place.