The Queen was open about her affection for Scotland throughout her reign. Generations of her family have enjoyed the beauty of its countryside, and Her Majesty has met Scots from all walks of life during Investitures, Garden Parties and her many visits to the regions.
Visits to Scotland
Shortly after her Coronation at Westminster Abbey, The Queen spent a week in Scotland, attending a National Service of thanksgiving and dedication at St Giles’ Cathedral, Edinburgh, on 24 June 1953. Cheering crowds witnessed a magnificent procession accompanying the royal carriage bearing the Queen and Duke of Edinburgh to St Giles.
The Honours of Scotland, the Crown, Sceptre and Sword, were ceremonially presented to the Sovereign, witnessed by 1,700 worshippers from all walks of Scottish life, and seen live on television. The Moderator of the General Assembly captured the moment: ’Today you and I are Scotland, greeting with all that we have to offer of love and duty our gracious young Queen.’
The Royal Yacht ‘Britannia’ was launched by HM Queen at John Brown’s shipyard in Clydebank on 16 April 1953. A crowd of more than 30,000 at the dockside sang Rule Britannia. ‘Britannia’ carried the Queen and her family on many journeys through Scottish waters and around the world until the vessel was de-commissioned in 1997.
Her Majesty visited Scotland for her Silver, Gold and Diamond Jubilees. During her visit to Perth in 2012, she said on the country:
Scotland has played such a very special part in our lives, and that of my family, over the years and we have greatly enjoyed our frequent visits.
Each year, The Queen spent a week in Scotland on official duties. Based at the Palace of Holyroodhouse in Edinburgh where an Investiture and Garden Party are held, Her Majesty used the palace as a base to visit other areas of Scotland, meeting people from all areas of
Scottish life, from farming communities to tech companies.
During her visit in 2021 she visited the Irn Bru factory, accompanied by The Duke of Cambridge.
The Queen spent much of childhood on the Balmoral Estate in Scotland, and continued to enjoy the stunning scenery and seclusion it offered along with her own family. King George VI and Queen Elizabeth took more interest in the Castle and its Estate than anyone since Queen Victoria, and this dedication to its upkeep was continued by The Queen and The Duke of Edinburgh.