The very first birthday cards from The King and The Queen Consort have been delivered to hundreds of people celebrating their 100th and 105th birthdays across the United Kingdom.
Several veterans of the Second World War are recipients of the first birthday cards from Their Majesties, including Ruth Park-Pearson, who was born in Glasgow in 1922 and served in the Women's Royal Naval Service (the WRENS). Ruth now lives in North Yorkshire, and celebrated her 100th birthday on Friday, 21st October, surrounded by many of her 6 children, 13 grandchildren and 25 great-grandchildren.
The posting of messages to mark significant birthdays and anniversaries is a tradition that dates back to 1917 and the reign of King George V, when those celebrating their 100th birthday or 60th wedding anniversary were sent a telegram of good wishes from His Majesty.
Today, thousands of birthday and wedding anniversary cards are sent from Buckingham Palace every year to those celebrating their 100th and 105th birthday and every year thereafter, and to those celebrating their 60th, 65th and 70th wedding anniversaries and every year thereafter. During Queen Elizabeth II’s reign, approximately 1.3 million cards were sent to mark birthdays and anniversaries across the UK, the Realms and the Overseas Territories.
The photograph of The King and The Queen Consort that appears on the birthday cards was taken in the summer of 2018.
You can find out more about how to apply for a card here.