Early Life

The Diamond Jubilee Guide - Early Life

The Queen was born Princess Elizabeth of York at 2.40am on 21 April 1926 at 17 Bruton Street, Mayfair, London. She was the first child of The Duke and Duchess of York, who were later crowned King George VI and Queen Elizabeth.

Not expected that she would become Queen, Elizabeth stood third in line of succession to the throne at the time of her nativity, after Edward, Prince of Wales (later King Edward VIII), and her father, The Duke of York. Her father also was not expected to become King and he in fact never succeeded to the throne.

Victoria: role model for the Young Elisabeth

Christened Elizabeth Alexandra Mary in the private chapel at Buckingham Palace, the infant Princess was named after her mother and also partially named after her paternal great-grandmother and grandmother, Queen Alexandra, and Queen Mary respectively. D The Queen gained her beloved and tragic sister, the late Princess Margaret Rose, in 1930.

Early Life

145 Piccadilly in London and White Lodge in Richmond Park were the two residences where the Princess and her sibling spent their formative years but they also resided in holidays at the country homes of her paternal grandparents, King George V and Queen Mary, and her mother's parents, the Earl and Countess of Strathmore.

Young & Carefree
Off Duty in 1969

The acquisition of Royal Lodge in Windsor Great Park in 1932 by the future Queen’s parents as their own country home gave the young princess her first nascent sense of independence. Y Bwthyn Bach (the Little Cottage) was donated to her by the people of Wales in the same year and this miniature house was located within the grounds of the Royal Lodge.

The Wedding of the Queen Mother 1923

In 1936 her grandfather, King George V, died and Elisabeth’s tranquil world was about to radically change. King Edward VIII, the eldest son of King George, chose to determine the throne by the end of 1936 in order to wed Mrs Wallis Simpson, a commoner.

Upon his abdication, Princess Elizabeth's father acceded to the throne as King George VI, and in 1937 the two Princesses were present the coronation of their parents in Westminster Abbey.

Princess Elizabeth, now a figure of passionate and powerful public attention, was now the primary successor to the crown.