London Takes to the Thames to Honor Queen Elizabeth

Festivities this weekend in London mark the 60-year reign of Queen Elizabeth II. The shining moment of the “Diamond Jubilee” was today’s boat parade on the River Thames. A thousand boats, including man-powered row boats and the barge carrying the British Royal Family, made their way from Albert Bridge to Tower Bridge, passing multiple London icons including the Millennium Bridge, London Bridge and Parliament along the seven-mile route.

In three years and 217 days, Queen Elizabeth II will surpass Queen Victoria as the longest reigning monarch of England. The Diamond Jubilee for Queen Victoria was held in 1897.

To honor Queen Elizabeth’s service to the country, the Clock Tower that houses Big Ben will be renamed in her honor. It came as a surprise to me to learn that the tower is not actually called “Big Ben.” Big Ben is the nickname of the Great Bell within Clock Tower, ahem, Elizabeth Tower. Is that news to you as well?

View pictures from the Diamond Jubilee river pageant.

Clock Tower

Clock Tower (2005)

Royal Family Aboard "Spirit of Chartwell"

Queen Elizabeth II and the Royal Family aboard the “Spirit of Chartwell.” Photo Courtesy of Ian Patterson, Flickr Creative Commons

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