In 2012, Her Majesty the Queen will become the second Monarch in British history to celebrate sixty years on the throne. We are thrilled to be celebrating this occasion with our commemorative stamps, which highlight just some of the many special events which have occurred since the Queen came to the throne.
The Queen has reigned through a period of great change and many people will want to join in the celebrations for Her Majesty's Diamond Jubilee, which will no doubt be an occasion to remember. The UK Government is working with Buckingham Palace to ensure that there are truly 'national' celebrations taking place over the Jubilee weekend, from 2-5 June 2012.
As part of these celebrations, on Monday 4 June 2012, the aim is to light 2012 beacons throughout the United Kingdom, Channel Islands, Isle of Man, the Commonwealth and other countries around the world in celebration of the Queen's reign. The beacons will be lit between 10pm and 10.30pm and the Queen will be lighting the National Beacon in London at approximately 10:30pm.
History shows a long and unbroken tradition of celebrating Royal Jubilees, weddings and Coronations with the lighting of beacons - be it on village greens, castle battlements or mountain tops. In 1897, beacons were lit to celebrate Queen Victoria's Diamond Jubilee and, more recently, in 1977 and 2002, the lighting of beacons took place to mark the Silver and Golden Jubilees of the Queen.