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Dublin: 11°C Monday 25 October 2021
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Queen off to the races as jubilee events begin

Queen Elizabeth is heading to Epsom for the Derby, as Britain begins a four-day weekend to mark her 60 years.

Work continues on the stage in front of the Victoria monument, and Buckingham Palace on the flag bedecked Mall, London, as preparations continue for the Jubilee celebrations.
Work continues on the stage in front of the Victoria monument, and Buckingham Palace on the flag bedecked Mall, London, as preparations continue for the Jubilee celebrations.
Image: Max Nash/PA Wire

QUEEN ELIZABETH II is off to the races, at the start of a four-day weekend celebrating her 60 years on the throne.

Diamond Jubilee festivities officially begin today with a 41-gun salute fired by the King’s Troop, Royal Horse Artillery at Horse Guards Parade in central London.

The 86-year-old monarch then will attend the Epsom Derby, one of the year’s biggest horse-racing meetings.

The queen took the throne in 1952 and most Britons have known no other monarch.

Despite cool, damp weather in much of the country, hundreds of thousands of people are expected to participate in celebrations.

The events will include street parties, Sunday’s 1,000-boat flotilla down the River Thames and a major pop concert in front of Buckingham Palace on Monday, featuring Elton John and Paul McCartney.

Though Elizabeth ascended to the throne in February 1952 on the death of her father, King George VI, the jubilee events are being timed to mark the anniversary of her formal coronation on June 2, 1953.

GALLERY: Queen Elizabeth marks 60 years of power >

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