2016 sees HRH Queen Elizabeth II celebrate her 90th birthday. In recognition of her remarkable life and historic reign, a number of objects from Harewood’s collection relating to the Queen are being displayed in the Gallery.
A Young Princess
Born on the 21st April 1926, the young Princess Elizabeth was not expected to become Queen. Following the heavily publicised abdication of her uncle, King Edward VIII, Elizabeth’s father, George VI, took his place on the throne. At the age of 10 years old, the young Princess Elizabeth become heiress presumptive.
The coronation of King George VI and Queen Elizabeth took place on the 12th May 1937. The ceremony was attended by both young princesses.
‘We waited in the little dressing room until it was time to go up the aisle. Then we arranged ourselves to form the procession. First of all came two Heralds, then two Gentlemen Ushers, then all in a line Margaret, Aunt Mary and myself…I thought it all very, very wonderful and I expect the Abbey did, too. The arches and beams at the top were covered with a sort of haze of wonder as Papa was crowned, at least I thought so.’
Princess Elizabeth, 1937
The 6th Countess of Harewood, Princess Mary, was Elizabeth’s aunt. Harewood is fortunate to be custodians of some wonderful objects, images and correspondence which are being displayed in honour of Queen Elizabeth.