Queen Elizabeth II joins Mrs. Susan McCarron, her ten-year-old son, James, and Housing Manager Liz McGinniss for tea in their home in the Castlemilk area of Glasgow in Scotland on July 7, 1999.
The 1990s opened with a historic first. In 1991, in the wake of the Gulf War, Queen Elizabeth became the first British monarch to address a joint session of the US Congress.
By this time it was evident that the marriage of Charles and Diana was failing. The Queen counselled the couple to reconcile, but to no avail.
1992 has gone down in history as the Queen's 'annus horribilis', a phrase she coined in a speech after a Guildhall luncheon to mark the 40th anniversary of her accession to the throne. In March 1992 the Duke and Duchess of York separated, while just a month later her daughter Princess Anne was divorced from Captain Mark Phillips. A state visit to Germany ran into trouble when demonstrators in Dresden threw eggs at the royal party.
In November Windsor Castle suffered a major fire. There was severe fire damage to nine principal state rooms. The restoration work was paid for by opening Buckingham Palace to the public at selected times of the year, and by introducing charges for public access to Windsor Great Park.
Prime Minister John Major announced that the Queen was to be taxed for the first time, and was to see a reduction in the civil list.
The 'annus horribilis' ended with the announcemnt of Charles and Diana's separation in December.
The rumours and scandal continued to circulate around the Queen's son and daughter-in-law and in 1995 she wrote to Prince Charles, advising him to obtain a divorce.
Just two years later, the Queen had to negotiate another crisis in when Princess Diana died in a Paris car crash. In the immediate aftermath of the death, she sought to protect her two grandsons in the privacy of Balmoral Castle. The public were disappointed by the royal withdrawal, and the Queen returned to London to make a moving speech about her daughter-in-law.