Two specially commissioned Diamond Jubilee photographs of The Queen and The Duke of Edinburgh have been released to mark the 60th anniversary of The Queen’s Accession
Official portrait of The Queen taken in the Centre Room in Buckingham Palace in December 2011 © Royal Household/John Swannell
Official portrait of The Queen and The Duke of Edinburgh taken in the Centre Room at Buckingham Palace in December 2011 © Royal Household/John Swannell
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About the photographer
The Photographs, by Mr John Swannell, were taken in the Centre Room in Buckingham Palace in December 2011.
Previous Royal sittings by Mr Swannell include:
1984 The Duchess of Gloucester
1990 HRH The Princess Royal (Official photograph to celebrate her 40th birthday)
1991 Princess Alexandra & The Hon Sir Angus Ogilvy
1995 Viscount & Lady Linley
1999 HM Queen Elizabeth II, HM The Queen Mother, HRH Prince Charles, HRH Prince William (Commemorative stamp to celebrate The Queen Mother’s 100th birthday)
1999 The Earl & Countess of Wessex (Commemorative stamp to celebrate their wedding)
1999 Lord Frederick Windsor (editorial)
2000 HRH The Princess Royal (Official photograph to celebrate her 50th birthday)
2002 The Queen & The Duke of Edinburgh (to celebrate The Queen’s Golden Jubilee)
2005 The Countess of Wessex (for The Girl Guide Association)
2008 HRH Prince Charles (for The Prince’s Rainforests Project)
2008 The Earl of Wessex (Regimental photographs)
2008 Viscount Severn (Official Christening photographs)
2008 Prince & Princess Michael of Kent (to celebrate their 30th wedding anniversary)
2009 The Countess of Wessex
2010 HRH The Princess Royal (Official photograph to celebrate her 60th birthday)
Mr Swannell said: “This is the third time I’ve had the pleasure of photographing Her Majesty, and I always find these events very exciting.
“Although it was quite an intricate shoot which I had to set up the day before, I had a tremendous amount of help from her personal staff, which made the project very enjoyable and rewarding.
“The Queen and Prince Philip, I thought, were patient and very relaxed on the day, which I hope is reflected in the photographs.”
The Queen’s dress and The Duke of Edinburgh’s uniform
The Queen is wearing a State Dress of white silk, satin and lace with silver coloured sequins. The dress has a flowing scalloped edge, and was created in Buckingham Palace by Miss Angela Kelly.
The Queen is wearing the State Diadem, a circlet of diamonds, created in 1820. The Queen wears this during the procession to and from the State Opening of Parliament, and wore it on her Coronation Day, for the procession to Westminster Abbey.
The Queen is also wearing Queen Victoria’s Collet Necklace which has been worn by five generations of Royal Ladies (Queen Victoria, Queen Alexandra, Queen Mary, Queen Elizabeth (the Queen Mother) and the present Queen). Queen Victoria (The Queen’s great-great grandmother) wore this necklace for her own official Diamond Jubilee photograph (issued in 1897).
On the blue Garter Riband (or sash) The Queen is wearing the Royal Family Orders of her grand father, King George V, and father, King George VI.
The Queen is wearing the Garter Star.
The Duke of Edinburgh
The Duke of Edinburgh is wearing Royal Navy ceremonial day dress (Admiral of the Fleet) with Garter Sash.
His Royal Highness’ medals are (from left to right):
• Queen’s Service Order, New Zealand
• 1939-1945 Star
• Atlantic Star
• Africa Star
• Burma Star (with Pacific Rosette)
• Italy Star
• War Medal 1939-1945, with Mention in Dispatches
• King George VI Coronation Medal, 1937
• Queen Elizabeth II Coronation Medal, 1953
• Queen Elizabeth II Silver Jubilee Medal, 1977
• Queen Elizabeth II Golden Jubilee Medal, 2002
• Canadian Forces Decoration (4 Bars)
• New Zealand Commemoration Medal, 1990
• Malta George Cross 50th Anniversary Medal, 1992
• Greek War Cross, 1950
• Croix de Guerre (France) with Palm, 1948
Centre Room (location of the photographic shoot) and Queen Victoria Memorial
The Centre Room is so-called because it is at the centre of a new wing built at Buckingham Palace from 1848. Its construction created the Palace Quadrangle; before the building had been in an open horseshoe format.
It is from the Centre Room which The Queen and the Royal Family have stepped onto the balcony during celebratory moments such as Coronation Day, Trooping the Colour and Royal Wedding days.
The Victoria Memorial, seen from the window of the Centre Room, commemorates the reign of Queen Victoria (1837-1901) the only Monarch, other than the present Queen, to celebrate a Diamond Jubilee (1897). At its pinnacle is a gilt-bronze figure of Victory, supported by Courage and Constancy.