The Queen's role
The Queen is ‘Constitutional Monarch’ of the Eastern Caribbean islands of Antigua and Barbuda. This means that in all of her official duties in relation to the islands Her Majesty speaks and acts as Queen of Antigua and Barbuda. During her reign there have been numerous Royal visits, and Her Majesty maintains constant contact with the three islands which make up Antigua and Barbuda through her Governor-General.
As a Constitutional Monarch, The Queen is not involved in the day-to-day business of the Antigua and Barbuda Government, but she continues to play important ceremonial and symbolic roles. Her Majesty is represented in Antigua and Barbuda by a Governor-General, with whom she retains regular contact.
Independent of the British Government, the Governor-General is appointed by The Queen on the advice of the ministers of Antigua and Barbuda. The Queen maintains direct contact with the Governor-General, although she delegates executive power to the Governor-General in virtually every respect.
The Queen and The Duke of Edinburgh have visited Antigua and Barbuda several times, beginning with their Caribbean tour of 1966, and there have been regular visits from other members of the Royal Family during Her Majesty’s reign.
Her Majesty and His Royal Highness visited the island of Barbuda during their 1966 tour, arriving in the capital city of St John's where they attended an Investiture at Government House and Divine Service at St John's Cathedral.
They visited again during the Silver Jubilee tour of October 1977, staying on board HMY Britannia. The Queen opened the New Administration Building and attended a lunch held by the Governor at Clarence House.
It is as much a celebration of 60 years in the life of Antigua and Barbuda. And as you look back, what a perfect setting to do that...to look back at all the history that has gone on here and to look at your achievements and to reflect...and be confident about where you come from and where you want to be in the future
The Earl of Wessex, of Antigua and Barbuda during the Diamond Jubilee year
In 1985, The Queen met patients and staff in the new Children's Ward of the Holberton Hospital following a Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting in the Bahamas.
In March 2012, The Earl and Countess of Wessex visited Antigua and Barbuda as part of a global tour celebrating the Queen's Diamond Jubilee. During the first day of the visit, the Royal couple were taken on a tour of Nelson's Dockyard and its museum and attended a lunch at Admiral's Inn hosted by the Prime Minister the Hon. Dr. Baldwin Spencer. At the lunch, the Prime Minister commented on the significance of the Commonwealth for Antigua and Barbuda:
'As small island states with limited resources and vulnerable to natural disasters, the Commonwealth has a critical role to play in helping to build capacity and helping to create programs that will empower their citizens.'
View footage of Princess Margaret's visit in 1955.
Prince Harry visited Antigua and Barbuda in 2016, as part of his Caribbean visit on behalf of The Queen. The Prince's visit came in the year Antigua and Barbuda celebrated its 35th anniversary of Independence.
As part of his visit, Prince Harry unveiled the country's dedication to The Queen's Commonwealth Canopy at Victoria Park Botanical Gardens, which will see the development of an accessible urban green space in the gardens.