How old is the Queen, and why does she have two birthdays?


THE Queen is the longest-serving British monarch – and is lucky enough to have two birthdays, one in April and a second in June.

We explain why Her Majesty has two birthdays and what days they fall on. Here’s everything you need to know.

The Queen was born on April 21, 1926, but that’s not the only date she celebrates

Why does the Queen have two birthdays?

The Queen has two birthday celebrations each year: one on her actual birth date, and the other on her “official” birthday – a public celebration.

This is because of how temperamental the British weather is.

The tradition for monarchs to have two birthdays was started by George II back in 1748.

At the time George was born in November and thought it was too cold to host an annual parade at that time.

He decided his birthday festivities would be combined with a military parade known as Trooping the Colour, which was held in spring.

The tradition for two separate birthdays continues to this day.

The Queen's 'official' birthday date changes every year, but is usually held on a Saturday in June for convenience

The Queen’s ‘official’ birthday date changes every year, but is usually held on a Saturday in June for convenience

When are the Queen’s birthdays in 2020?

Queen Elizabeth II was born on April 21, 1926, but her second birthday date changes every year.

It is usually held on a Saturday in June, often the second one, for convenience.

The “official” birthday is still celebrated by the Trooping the Colour procession.

Her Majesty is joined by other members of the Royal Family at the parade, which moves between Buckingham Palace, The Mall and Horseguards’ Parade.

She also makes a public appearance on the balcony of Buckingham Palace.

This year, her official birthday will take place on June 13.

Many will remember the Queen’s 90th festivities as one of the highlights of 2016

Many will remember the Queen’s 90th festivities as one of the highlights of 2016

How old is Elizabeth II?

The Queen is 93, making her the oldest monarch to have reigned in Britain with second place going to Queen Victoria who lived to the age of 81.

Many will remember the Queen’s 90th festivities as one of the highlights of 2016.

Apart from when it is a milestone celebration, the Queen traditionally spends her actual birthday privately.

She became our sovereign on June 2, 1953.

Is the Queen preparing to stand down?

Over the summer of 2017 speculation grew that the Queen could stand down, effectively giving Prince Charles the throne.

The monarch was reported to have told her inner circle she would request the Regency Act be activated if she was still on the throne at the age of 95.

However, the speculation appeared to be quashed a week later when sources close to Her Majesty told HOARday Times she had no intention of stepping aside for Prince Charles.

They added that the Queen was as committed as ever to her duty.

The throne will pass to Prince Charles if the Queen abdicates, retires or dies.

From Princess Elizabeth to The Queen: the monarch over the decades

Princess Elizabeth aged two in 1928
Surrounded by flowers on July 8, 1941, at the age of 15, at Windsor Castle in Berkshire
Princess Elizabeth, writing at her desk at Windsor Castle, on May 30, 1944, aged 18
Princess Elizabeth (22) holding Prince Charles after his christening ceremony at Buckingham Palace, December 15, 1948
A picture of Queen Elizabeth II – then Princess Elizabeth – dancing (aged 25) at Government House in Ottawa as she takes part in the country square dances during her tour of Canada with Prince Philip, October 18, 1951
At the inauguration of the CANTAT (Canadian Trans-Atlantic Telephone) cable the Queen, 35, makes the first call to Ottawa from London in December 1961
Queen Elizabeth (45) enjoys a night at the Royal Festival Hall in London, June 1971
The Queen (55) smiles during an inspection as she tours New Zealand on October 01, 1981 in New Zealand
Seen in a silk dress designed by Hardy Amies in Washington, May 15, 1991, aged 65
The Queen attending a banquet, Guernsey, in July 2001, aged 75
Celebrating her 80th birthday at the Ritz Hotel, London, the Queen is pictured with the Duke of Edinburgh on December 5, 2006
The Queen laughing with Prince Charles as they watch competitors during the Braemar Gathering at the Princess Royal and Duke of Fife Memorial Park on September 2, 2006 in Braemar, Scotland
Awaiting the arrival of Turkey’s President at an official ceremony on November 22, 2011, in London – aged 85
In 2012, the Queen was joking with the Duchess of Cambridge during a Diamond Jubilee visit to Nottingham
Enjoying a joke with the Duchess of Sussex on June 14, 2018, in Cheshire, aged 92
The Queen (93) attending a garden party at the Palace of Holyroodhouse, Edinburgh, July 3 2019, with, from left, Prince Andrew, Prince Edward and Princess Anne
Pictured on July 9, 2019 in Cambridge, the Queen (93) visited the National Institute of Agricultural Botany