The late, great Queen Elizabeth II spent most of her life lived in the public gaze. And as such was one of the most photographed women in the world. Nothing short of an icon, Her Royal Highness was captured from every conceivable perspective. As she carried out her duties for the crown during her unprecedented seven decade tenure on the throne.
Very much cast as a woman of the people, the Elizabethan era ushered in countless new chapters in the way the world watched the most famous of royal families. As they went about the business of managing what the Queen’s husband, the late Prince Phillip would playfully describe as ‘the firm’.
And there at the very heart of ‘the firm’ was a woman who defined the role of royalty. A woman who put the ‘Great’ into Britain. A woman who quickly became seen by millions as the nation’s mum. And with the passing of subsequent years; the nation’s grandmother. Someone who had the human touch. Who ensured that the Royal Family were positioned in such a way that they were more accessible. Dare we say it, accountable, than they’d ever been previously.
The Queen, The Royal Reformer
Queen Elizabeth II was instrumental in removing many of those ivory tower protocols which distanced them from us. Setting in motion something of a royal revolution. The like of which had never been observed before.
Her Royal Highness oversaw a period of transition and transparency which might have ruffled the feathers of the purists. Yet she had her finger on the pulse of her subjects. Recognising a developing nation necessitated a Royal Family which kept pace with the broader societal evolution.
Over time, our longest serving monarch became a constant in all of our lives. Queen Elizabeth II ruled when the Cold War was entered and ended. When the Berlin Wall and Twin Towers fell. As Edmund Hillary and Sherpa Tenzing Norgay conquered Everest and Nelson Mandela was freed from prison. When Neil Armstrong set foot on the moon, and England lifted the World Cup.
When the mobile phone and internet were invented.
The Queen served her nation, her Commonwealth and all of her people with diligence, compassion and fortitude throughout key moments in timelines that generations X, Y and Z negotiated.
The Queen, The Talisman
Looked upon for direction and anchorage as much in the bad times as the good, it was only in recent history when and where HRH Queen Elizabeth II delivered a Coronavirus Lockdown speech which stirred a frightened nation. And provided leadership and hope where even politicians and scientists couldn’t. Who will ever forget the empowering ‘we will meet again’ rally cry that instantly resonated with us all.
Yet all of the above recounting of Her Majesty’s finest and most well-documented hours took place in the most public of places. Broadcast on our televisions, radios, the internet or wherever else we receive our multi-faceted media here in 2022. As was the case of The Queen’s life through lenses of all types.
The Queen, The Wife and Mother
But what of the off-duty Monarch. The Queen as a wife, as a sister, as a mother, as a grandmother and a great grandmother. That private face of a woman born unto a life of public service and duty. Rather than the upshot of a chosen career path.
As we gather around those same mass media devices to both mourn and conversely, celebrate a life lived like no other. As tens of thousands of us join long and winding queues which stretch across London postcodes to pay our respects. As we collectively steel ourselves in the midst of a national outpouring of emotion. An increasing volume of candid snapshots of our glorious Queen at rest and play, as opposed to work, have emerged.
The Queen of Our Hearts
Pictorially chronicling a devoted wife, sister, mother, grandmother and great grandmother, these priceless captures not only enthrall us, but more importantly provide us with poignant insights into what personified The Queen to those who knew her best.
Her inner circle.
Her loved ones.
Whether captured laughing or picnicing, driving or horsing around, highland walking or Corgi walking, Her Majesty clearly lived as full a life behind the scenes. As she did at the epicentre of her unswervingly public ones.
In the wake of her recent state funeral, DT pays tribute to HRH Queen Elizabeth II courtesy of these illustrative moments caught on camera. All of which reveal a woman like you or me.
Only with an extraordinary wealth of responsibility placed on her shoulders from her coronation, onwards. And only drew to an end with the onset of The Queen’s own tragic demise.
Join us, as a proud nation comes together as one to honour the memory and enduring legacy of a woman of all out times; Her Royal Highness, the Queen.