Thursday off to the Platinum Jubilee. The biographer Vickers: A whole country that grew up with her. And the queen inside her still feels young
LONDON – Its first premier was Churchill: since then Queen Elizabeth for the United Kingdom a constant presence. As a constitutional head of state, he led the country through the postwar period, the economic crises, Margaret Thatcher’s reforms, the war in the Falklands, Tony Blair’s cool Britain, Diana’s death, Brexit, the pandemic. Thursday begins 4 days of celebrations for her 70 years on the throne: an opportunity to pay homage to a queen who – for the historian and biographer Hugo Vickers – demonstrated an unparalleled sense of duty. For Vickers to celebrate an obligation: It could be the last opportunity to show Elizabeth our affection and our gratitude.
What does this jubilee mean for the queen?
an extraordinary achievement, which has no equal in our country. Elizabeth grew up with us. He knew the Second World War, he accompanied us in all the important stages. I don’t think the queen sees things this way. He doesn’t think about the years. Inside he feels young. The queen mother was the same. Until the end, she made plans for the future. We have to be realistic. This will in all likelihood be the last jubilee. There is thus a note of concern for the queen’s health, and of sadness.
Is the country ready for after Elizabeth?
The past two years have been difficult for everyone. The queen also suffered. The loss of her husband, Andrea, Harry and Meghan, now her health problems: not a script we wanted to write for her. Are we ready for after Elizabeth? Maybe we don’t want to think about it. It will not be easy to take the place of the queen, but I believe that despite what we read in the newspapers, despite the scandals, despite that terrible program that The Crownthe country has great affection for the monarchy.
Carlo will become strong king of an experience without equal. No one has ever been a Prince of Wales for so long. He will be different from Elizabeth, but I think he will know how to be a very good king. The queen has paved the way. She has entrusted him with the Commonwealth, she has defined what role she will have Camilla and asked the country to accept her. Camilla did a lot of good for Carlo. I was against their marriage in the beginning, but they are fine together. The Duchess is an extremely polite, kind, nice woman. Told there I don’t think Carlo was born to be completely happy.
How do you think the queen lives the events of Andrea and the disagreements between the royal family and Harry and Meghan?
For the queen, the family is very important and despite her devotion to the crown she cannot forget that she is a mother, grandmother and great-grandmother. From her queen she took away from her son Andrea any official role, from her mother she wanted him alongside her at the ceremony in memory of Prince Philip. Same situation with the Sussex dukes. I will welcome them with warmth and affection. I wouldn’t have invited them. It bothers me that they are taking away the attention of the real protagonist.
What will Elizabeth’s legacy be?
His constancy and his firmness. He has given us a great example of moral leadership. His speech to the nation during the pandemic was watched by 28 million people. We all felt comforted by her words. Elizabeth manages to have an extraordinary effect on people. He has a very different way of communicating from that of politicians. When she met the victims of the Grenfell Tower, an extraordinary atmosphere created around her. Part of her strength is her faith. His motto “do your best and say your prayers in the evening”.
You have a very close relationship with the queen’s jubilees, how was born?
I started with the silver one in 1977. My job was to put the flags in London. James Callaghan’s Labor government was opposed to allocating funds and so an independent commission was created operating in the capital. I went around the city to choose the most appropriate places ….
What is your dearest memory of the queen?
I spent a whole evening sitting next to him at a dinner where we were only a handful of people. of excellent company. My dearest memory is perhaps that of our first meeting, when I was 16 and was a guide in Windsor Chapel. At one point she entered with her son Edoardo by the hand. She had a slightly shy smile.
May 30, 2022 (change May 30, 2022 | 22:59)
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