An epic account of the events that shaped Britain, from the death of Queen Victoria to the end of the Second World War.
Runtime: 60 minutes
Andrew Marr's The Making of Modern Britain - Elizabeth II - Netflix
Elizabeth II (Elizabeth Alexandra Mary; born 21 April 1926) is Queen of the United Kingdom and the other Commonwealth realms. Elizabeth was born in London as the first child of the Duke and Duchess of York, later King George VI and Queen Elizabeth, and she was educated privately at home. Her father acceded to the throne on the abdication of his brother King Edward VIII in 1936, from which time she was the heir presumptive. She began to undertake public duties during the Second World War, serving in the Auxiliary Territorial Service. In 1947, she married Philip, Duke of Edinburgh, a former prince of Greece and Denmark, with whom she has four children: Charles, Prince of Wales; Anne, Princess Royal; Prince Andrew, Duke of York; and Prince Edward, Earl of Wessex. When her father died in February 1952, she became Head of the Commonwealth and queen regnant of seven independent Commonwealth countries: the United Kingdom, Canada, Australia, New Zealand, South Africa, Pakistan, and Ceylon. She has reigned through major constitutional changes, such as devolution in the United Kingdom, Canadian patriation, and the decolonisation of Africa. Between 1956 and 1992, the number of her realms varied as territories gained independence and realms, including South Africa, Pakistan, and Ceylon (renamed Sri Lanka), became republics. Her many historic visits and meetings include a state visit to the Republic of Ireland and visits to or from five popes. Significant events have included her coronation in 1953 and the celebrations of her Silver, Golden, and Diamond Jubilees in 1977, 2002, and 2012 respectively. In 2017, she became the first British monarch to reach a Sapphire Jubilee. She is the longest-lived and longest-reigning British monarch as well as the world's longest-reigning queen regnant and female head of state, the oldest and longest-reigning current monarch and the longest-serving current head of state. Elizabeth has occasionally faced republican sentiments and press criticism of the royal family, in particular after the breakdown of her children's marriages, her annus horribilis in 1992, and the death in 1997 of her former daughter-in-law Diana, Princess of Wales. However, support for the monarchy remains high, as does her personal popularity.
Andrew Marr's The Making of Modern Britain - 2010s - Netflix
The Queen, who opened the 1976 Summer Olympics in Montreal, also opened the 2012 Summer Olympics and Paralympics in London, making her the first head of state to open two Olympic Games in two different countries. For the London Olympics, she played herself in a short film as part of the opening ceremony, alongside Daniel Craig as James Bond. On 4 April 2013, she received an honorary BAFTA for her patronage of the film industry and was called “the most memorable Bond girl yet” at the award ceremony. On 3 March 2013, Elizabeth was admitted to King Edward VII's Hospital as a precaution after developing symptoms of gastroenteritis. She returned to Buckingham Palace the following day. A week later, she signed the new Commonwealth charter. Because of her age and the need for her to limit travelling, in 2013 she chose not to attend the biennial meeting of Commonwealth heads of government for the first time in 40 years. She was represented at the summit in Sri Lanka by her son, Prince Charles. She had cataract surgery in May 2018. The Queen surpassed her great-great-grandmother, Queen Victoria, to become the longest-lived British monarch on 21 December 2007, and the longest-reigning British monarch and longest-reigning queen regnant and female head of state in the world on 9 September 2015. She is also the “longest-reigning sovereign in Canada's modern era”. (King Louis XIV of France reigned over Canada (New France) for longer than Elizabeth.) She became the oldest current monarch after King Abdullah of Saudi Arabia died on 23 January 2015. She later became the longest-reigning current monarch and the longest-serving current head of state following the death of King Bhumibol of Thailand on 13 October 2016, and the oldest current head of state on the resignation of Robert Mugabe on 21 November 2017. On 6 February 2017, she became the first British monarch to commemorate a Sapphire Jubilee, and on 20 November, she was the first British monarch to celebrate a platinum wedding anniversary. Prince Philip had retired from his official duties as the Queen's consort in August. The Queen does not intend to abdicate, though Prince Charles is expected to take on more of her duties as Elizabeth, who celebrated her 92nd birthday in 2018, carries out fewer public engagements. On 20 April 2018, the government leaders of the Commonwealth of Nations announced that she will be succeeded by Prince Charles as head of the Commonwealth. The Queen stated it was her “sincere wish” that the Prince of Wales would follow her in the role. Plans for her death and funeral have been extensively prepared by most British government and media organisations for decades.
The Queen addressed the United Nations for a second time in 2010, again in her capacity as Queen of all Commonwealth realms and Head of the Commonwealth. The UN Secretary General, Ban Ki-moon, introduced her as “an anchor for our age”. During her visit to New York, which followed a tour of Canada, she officially opened a memorial garden for British victims of the September 11 attacks. The Queen's visit to Australia in October 2011 – her sixteenth visit since 1954 – was called her “farewell tour” in the press because of her age. By invitation of the Irish President, Mary McAleese, the Queen made the first state visit to the Republic of Ireland by a British monarch in May 2011.
In this special year, as I dedicate myself anew to your service, I hope we will all be reminded of the power of togetherness and the convening strength of family, friendship and good neighbourliness ... 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.
Elizabeth's Diamond Jubilee in 2012 marked 60 years on the throne, and celebrations were held throughout her realms, the wider Commonwealth, and beyond. In a message released on Accession Day, Elizabeth wrote:
Andrew Marr's The Making of Modern Britain - References - Netflix