Can you imagine what it would be like to have your very own coronation? The crown, the coach, the crowds, the church — all very reminiscent of a fairytale, you’d think. And in theory, you’d be right, but in practice, not so much. Indeed, some parts of it you might even come to remember as being positively un-fairytale-like. Says who, you say? Oh, only Queen Elizabeth…
In a trailer for a new documentary dedicated to the anniversary of the Queen’s 65th year on the throne, Her Majesty talks about her memories of the great day — June 2, 1953 — when she made her way to Westminster Abbey to be crowned Queen of the UK.
“I’ve seen one coronation and been the recipient in the other, which is pretty remarkable,” she points out. On the subject of the journey, she appears to label it “horrible!” and adds “It’s only sprung on leather. Not very comfortable,” in what is believed to be a reference to the Gold State Coach’s lack of suspension.
As to the other people involved, the royal children, say, did they enjoy it? Documentary presenter Alastair Bruce made the error of thinking so. When seated next to Queen Elizabeth watching footage of Prince Charles and Princess Anne playing with her coronation robes, he commented: “Such fun for the children!” But the Queen jokingly responded, “Not what they’re meant to do!”
Now to the Crown Jewels. A marvel to behold, yes, but what are they actually like TO hold? “There are some disadvantages to the crowns,” she says before quipping, “but otherwise, they’re quite important things…”
Another clip shows her expressing particular admiration for the “Prince’s Ruby” — the abochon red spinel set in the cross pattée at the front of the Imperial State Crown, officially known as “Black Prince’s Ruby.”
But when it came to the day as a whole, and what it represents to her, the Queen reveals thoughtfully, “It’s, I suppose, the beginning of one’s life really… as a sovereign.”
We much look forward to seeing the documentary in full when it airs on Jan. 14 on BBC One. And what will we be wearing to watch it? Our crown and coronation robes, naturally.