The Earl of Wessex Opens the Blackburn Youth Zone in Lancashire

On February 6, 2012, His Royal Highness the Earl of Wessex was in Lancashire to attend the opening of the Blackburn Youth Zone.  This £8million complex provides the local youth with:

…an extensive sport and fitness facilities, with a multitude of sporting classes and opportunities (including tennis, hockey, netball, unihock, cricket, dodgeball), a state-of-the-art gym and a rooftop kick pitch.

An exciting and varied arts programme includes an expansive dance studio, arts and music workshops, visual arts apparatus and accredited options.

 An informal and relaxed atmosphere with a range of indoor activities and a chill-out zone.

Afterward, the Earl attended the Young Presidents’ Chapter Dinner held at the Blackburn Youth Zone.

Source: Blackburnyz

His Serene Highness Prince Albert II of Monaco Receives the President of the Republic of Palau

On February 5, 2012, the President of the Republic of Palau, Mr. Johnson Toribiong, arrived in Monaco for a four-day official visit.  Upon his arrival His Serene Highness Prince Albert II greeted the president to his country.  Later in the evening the sovereign prince and the president attended the concert, La Création du Monde, held at L’Auditorium Rainier III.

This afternoon, President Toribiong and his delegation arrived at the Palais Princier de Monaco where he was received by Prince Albert II.  After a quick balcony wave and a successful meeting at the Palais Princier the duo attended a presentation of activities from the Fondation Prince Albert II (Prince Albert II Foundation) held at the Hôtel de Paris in Monte-Carlo.

Tomorrow, February 7, 2012, President Toribiong and his delegation will participate a working meeting with members of the Monaco government and then attend the official opening of the Consulate of Palau in Monaco.

Click here to view photos from this morning’s activities.

Source: Palais Princier de Monaco

Photo courtesy of Daylife

‘Queen Elizabeth II by Cecil Beaton: A Diamond Jubilee Celebration’ A New Exhibition. Plus, A New Book About The Queen by Journalist, Andrew Marr.

Beginning on February 8, 2012, the famous Victoria and Albert Museum in London will première the highly anticipated exhibition entitled, Queen Elizabeth II by Cecil Beaton: A Diamond Jubilee Celebration.

According to an official press release from the Victoria and Albert Museum:

The exhibition will present highlights of the V&A’s collection of Beaton’s royal photography, depicting The Queen over three decades in her roles as princess, monarch and mother. It will include a number of photographs never before seen, as well as excerpts from Beaton’s personal diaries and letters and broadcast footage.

Click here for more information about Queen Elizabeth II by Cecil Beaton: A Diamond Jubilee Celebration.  If you happen to visit or live in and around London why not visit this special exhibition… it ends on April 22, 2012.  An article from Reuters about the exhibition.

Also, there is a new book by well-known British journalist, Andrew Marr, entitled, The Real Elizabeth.  According to an official press release:

Queen Elizabeth II ascended the throne of the British monarchy on February 6, 1952 at the age of 25. Today, sixty years later, she is one of England’s longest-reigning monarchs and remains an enigma. In public, she confines herself to optimistic pieties and guarded smiles; in private, she is wry, funny, and an excellent mimic. Now, for the first time, one of Britain’s leading journalists and historians gets behind the mask and tells us the fascinating story of the Queen…

The Real Elizabeth is available now via Amazon, Barnes & Noble as well as other book shops.

Meanwhile, this evening on BBC One, Mr. Marr narrates the history of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II in a new three-part documentary entitled, The Diamond Queen.  Click here for more information.

With many thanks to Amelia from the V&A Museum Press Office and Christine Choe from H.Holt and Co. for sending me the information and photos.   🙂

Her Royal Highness Grand Duchess Maria Teresa of Luxembourg Attends the Conference ‘Stop aux Mutilations Génitales Féminine’s

On February 6, 2012, Her Royal Highness Grand Duchess Maria Teresa of Luxembourg attended a conference and roundtable discussion entitled, ‘Stop aux Mutilations Génitales Féminines’, in Luxembourg.

The event, organized by the Foundation Follereau Luxembourg, was also attended by Somali supermodel and author of the book Desert Flower Ms. Waris Dirie, Emeritus Professor at the University of Brussels Dr. Jean-Jacques Amy, and  many others. The purpose of today’s conference is to discuss and bring attention to the horrific practice of female genital mutilation.

Source Cour Grand-Ducale de Luxemborg

Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II Spends Accession Day in Norfolk (VIDEOS)

On February 6, 2012, Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II spent Accession Day in Norfolk “…to mark the start of her diamond jubilee celebrations.”  The Queen did a small walkabout outside of King’s Lynn Town Hall then visited the Dersingham Primary School where the local pupils performed a song and dance number to the delight of Her Majesty.

Click the links below to watch videos and to view photos from today’s event.


Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II’s Official Diamond Jubilee Photos Released. Plus, News Reports from the BBC and Sky (VIDEOS)

On February 6, 2012, Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II will celebrate her 60th anniversary on the British throne.  Recently, “two specially commissioned Diamond Jubilee photographs of The Queen and The Duke of Edinburgh have been released…”  The images, shot by Mr John Swannell, were taken in the Centre Room at Buckingham Palace in December 2011.

Click here to view the photos. 

And, finally Her Majesty released a statement regarding her Diamond Jubilee:

Today, as I mark 60 years as your Queen, I am writing to thank you for the wonderful support and encouragement that you have given to me and Prince Phillip over these years and to tell you how deeply moved we have been to receive so many kind messages about the Diamond Jubilee.

In this special year, as I dedicate myself anew to your service, I hope that we will all be reminded of the power of togetherness and the convening strength of family, friendship and good neighbourliness, examples of which I have been fortunate to see throughout my reign and which my family and I look forward to seeing in many forms as we travel throughout the United Kingdom and the wider Commonwealth.

I hope also that this Jubilee year will be a time to give thanks for the great advances that have been made since 1952 and to look forward to the future with clear head and warm heart as we join together in our celebrations.

I send my sincere good wishes to you all.




Photo courtesy of VAMUK