QUEEN Elizabeth is the longest-serving monarch in British history and turned 92 on April 21, but the Sovereign has the unique pleasure of enjoying two birthdays.
One occasion is to mark her actual birth date and one to celebrate her ‘official’ birthday.
The tradition is believed to draw its roots from the mid-1600s, when the Trooping the Colour ceremony was first conducted.
The ceremony was an imperative exercise for British soldiers who needed to be able to recognise their regiments’ colours and flags during battle. However it was later decided by George II in 1748 that the Trooping the Colour ceremony would also mark the sovereign’s official birthday.
Her Majesty will celebrate her official birthday by attending Trooping the Colour in Horse Guards Parade, arriving in her carriage to inspect the troops.
She is often followed by Princess Anne, Prince William, and Prince Charles on horseback.
Other members of the Royal Family including the Duchess of Cambridge, Duchess of Cornwall and Prince Harry will join the parade in carriages.
The festivities are concluded by a flyover of British fighter jets producing stream of red, white and blue; the colour of the Union Jack.
The entire Royal Family will watch the flyover from the front balcony of Buckingham Palace.
Prince Louis, the youngest member of the Royal Family, is also expected to make his first appearance in front of the crowds of Royal spectators.
Trooping the Colour will feature over 1400 officers, 400 musicians from 10 bands and 200 horses as they parade through the streets of central London.
A different regiment’s colour are trooped each year, and it will be the Colour of the 1st Battalion Coldstream Guards in 2018.