Always Reigns In England

Christopher Fowler
An extra post today because Queen Elizabeth II became the longest reigning monarch in 1,000 years of British history at 5.30pm. That's
63 years and 216 days on the throne, overtaking Queen Victoria. I'm not much of a royalist when it comes to those in the lower branches, but Elizabeth II has been there all of my life, a sentinel, figurehead and role model of sorts - it's a very comforting image. It's been pointed out that she has never made any decisions affecting us, but I don't think that's true. She has made a direct difference when you come to understand exactly what she and her family (some of them, anyway) do and achieve. My brother had to look after Prince Andrew at his place of work and considers him the most well-informed ambassador they ever had. Princess Diana's death robbed the film industry of its biggest charity fundraiser because she agreed to attend premieres in order to raise cash to clear land mines. The Queen is worth
£300m (i.e. less than the thugs who live in London's penthouses) so she's good value for money. I am a New Elizabethan - that's what they called us when we were children, when we had the concepts of honour and duty and sacrifice explained to us, and it made a lot more sense than any religion I was taught. A monarch must command respect. It's Prince Charles's problem, and Queen Elizabeth's great strength.
She didn't take time off today - she opened a railway, as you do. Here's the marvellous Prunella Scales doing a glassy-eyed bit of data-gathering with Sir Anthony Blunt as they decide on a question of attribution that turns into an examination of loyalty and treason, courtesy of Alan Bennett.  


Brooke Lynne (not verified) Wed, 09/09/2015 - 20:56

In reply to by anonymous_stub (not verified)

What a marvelous clip! Thank you.

Wayne Mook (not verified) Wed, 09/09/2015 - 22:21

In reply to by anonymous_stub (not verified)

I not really a royalist, but she kept the Commonwealth together when Thatcher wanted to get rid of it. Anything that's gets nations talking and working together is a good thing, Jaw Jaw is better than War War.


Helen Martin (not verified) Wed, 09/09/2015 - 23:03

In reply to by anonymous_stub (not verified)

MS Scales does a magnificent job with some great lines (I don't want to be captured) but she can't get the voice quite right. Hers is all edge while the Queen's just has an edge. The queen visited Canada when I was a child - before she married? Could have been. She was opening a residence for the blind and Mother took us to see her go into the building because "This will probably be your only chance to see a real princess." Until Princess Diana, yes, she was right. I thought she was beautiful and she was wearing the loveliest blue coat. Things have changed since her children grew up.

Jo W (not verified) Thu, 10/09/2015 - 06:50

In reply to by anonymous_stub (not verified)

Thankyou,Chris,I enjoyed that little clip. Very Alan Bennett,especially that remark about being painted as a 'screaming queen' !

Alan Morgan (not verified) Sat, 12/09/2015 - 08:09

In reply to by anonymous_stub (not verified)

A queen and a spy.