Belfast Telegraph

Queen takes guest spot in coronation documentary

By Tony Jones

The Queen has made a rare appearance in a television documentary to comment on the experience of her coronation.

The BBC programme, which tells the story of the crown jewels and the ceremony of crowning a new monarch, features the Queen chatting with royal commentator Alastair Bruce.

In the hour-long film The Coronation, the Queen recollects: "I've seen one coronation, and been the recipient in the other, which is pretty remarkable."

Three weeks after she turned 11, the then Princess Elizabeth saw her parents crowned at George VI's coronation at Westminster Abbey on May 12, 1937.

The Queen later acceded to the throne on February 6, 1952, when her father died unexpectedly in his sleep at Sandringham in Norfolk. Despite the country being in the grip of post-war austerity a glittering coronation was staged on June 2 the following year at Westminster Abbey.

Charlotte Moore, BBC director of content, said about the programme due to be screened later this month: "It is a real honour to have Her Majesty the Queen revealing her intimate knowledge of the crown jewels - and fond childhood memories from when her father was crowned King George VI in this very special film for BBC One.

"In her own words, the Queen will bring to life the enduring symbolic importance of the coronation ceremonies for modern audiences to enjoy."

Objects associated with the coronation are known as regalia - sceptres, orb, ring, swords, spurs and robes - which have a specific part to play in the ritual.

The monarch is crowned by the Archbishop of Canterbury with the St Edward's Crown - made of gold and decorated with precious and semi-precious stones, including sapphires, tourmalines, amethysts, topazes and citrines.

However, the best-known item is the Imperial State Crown, re-made for the coronation of George VI in 1937. It is worn at the end of the coronation service and at the State Opening of Parliament.

The Coronation will be screened on BBC One on January 14 at 8pm

Belfast Telegraph

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