Royal devotion celebrated at abbey
The 60th anniversary of the Queen's coronation has been celebrated by the nation at a service where her qualities of devotion and self-sacrifice were praised.
At Westminster Abbey, where Elizabeth II was crowned on June 2 1953, Britain's leaders, royals and ordinary members of the public gathered to honour her.
Six decades have passed since that historic day but the Archbishop of Canterbury said the Queen had remained committed to her role throughout that time.
The Most Rev Justin Welby told the abbey's 2,000-strong congregation that during the coronation ceremony the Queen knelt at the altar and prayed.
He said: "We do not know what was prayed. Her Majesty knelt at the beginning of a path of demanding devotion and utter self-sacrifice, a path she did not choose, yet to which she was called by God. Today we celebrate 60 years since that moment, 60 years of commitment."
The Queen's coronation was a spectacle of pomp and ceremony that held the nation spellbound when the young monarch, just 27 years old, was given symbols of leadership and authority. More than 8,200 guests witnessed the historic events and an estimated 27 million people in Britain watched on television - a relatively new medium at the time.
The Archbishop made reference to the death of Drummer Lee Rigby highlighting the efforts of members of the public, such as Ingrid Loyau-Kennett, who went to the aid of the fatally-wounded soldier, and the actions of the police officers who responded to the incident.
He said: "When we obey God's call, whoever we are, leading government or quietly serving our local community, we establish a country that is open-handed and open-hearted, serving others with joy.
"In such service we become Britain at its best. We know how to celebrate - as again last year in the Olympics. We know how to comfort and grieve - as on the streets of Woolwich, in the courage of passers-by and police."
Sitting with the Queen were her family, led by the Duke of Edinburgh, who pulled out of a royal engagement with her on Monday night after feeling under the weather, but appeared in good spirits.