As part of plans to open up its extensive archives, the BBC today releases a new collection, Princess Elizabeth: The Making Of A Queen.
Made up of 19 radio and television broadcasts, spanning 12 years from 1940 to 1952, it gives audiences the opportunity to look back at how the future Queen gave heart to the country following the end of the Second World War.
Coinciding with this year’s Trooping The Colour celebrations for The Queen’s official birthday, the collection lets the public to take advantage of the BBC’s unique access and ability to witness defining moments in history, to make them available to audiences online.
Beginning in 1940, with Princess Elizabeth’s first broadcast for the BBC at the age of 14 for Children’s Hour, the recordings also include her speech to the Commonwealth from South Africa on her 21st birthday, the newsreel footage from the Royal wedding in 1947 and the announcement of the birth of Prince Charles.
Julie Rowbotham, Executive Producer, BBC Archive, said: “This collection provides a fascinating insight into the contribution made by Princess Elizabeth through the Second World War, and the post-war years leading up to her Coronation. The BBC’s remarkable archives enable audiences to learn much more about the time, and also the important role played by the then Princess in years that saw so much change.”
This collection is the latest series to be released online which explore the cultural and political developments that shaped the 20th century.
The collection goes live today (Saturday 13 June) when it can be viewed by going online to bbc.co.uk/archive/princesselizabeth.
Through the creation of these online collections, the BBC hopes to release hidden treasures providing a fascinating source of socio-political history.
The BBC Archive, which holds nearly one million hours of TV and radio programming, serves as a reminder of how the BBC evolved, and has an unrivalled record of modern British history.