The State Opening of Parliament
The Queen attends the State Opening of Parliament in 1967 with the Duke of Edinburgh, Prince Charles and Princess Anne.
The annual state opening of parliament takes place every year in the autumn, and additionally after a general election. This is a state occasion on which the Queen is called upon to play a central, and majestic, role.
The Queen is driven in a state carriage from Buckingham Palace
to the Palace of Westminster, preceded by the Imperial Crown, which
travels in a separate carriage. Preceded by the Sword of State and
the Cap of Maintenance, the Queen progresses through Westminster
Palace to the House of Lords, wearing her Crown and crimson
The official known as Black Rod is then sent to summon the Commons, and in an annual ritual the door to the Chamber is symbolically slammed in his face by the Serjeant at Arms to assert the Commons' independence. The door is opened in response to three knocks with his ebony staff of office. The Speaker and the Serjeant at Arms, then lead the Prime Minister and Leader of the Opposition to the Lords' Chamber.
The speech, written by the Prime Minister and Cabinet and
setting out plans for the coming Session, is then delivered by the
The Queen's first State Opening of Parliament was in November 1952, before her coronation. She was not, therefore, able to wear the Imperial State Crown on this occasion, as this is an honour only accorded to the monarch after the coronation.