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Royal pain: Queen reveals downside of her 65-year reign

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Queen Elizabeth has revealed some of the drawbacks to reigning over us in a new BBC documentary called The Coronation.

In the hour-long programme, which will be aired on Sunday, the Queen speaks candidly about the moment she was crowned, joking that she cannot look down while wearing the Imperial State Crown, which weighs 2lbs 13oz (1.28kg), as her neck would break if she did so.

“So there are some disadvantages to crowns, but otherwise they’re quite important things,” the Queen adds.

The documentary features the monarch in conversation with royal commentator Alastair Bruce and tells the story of the crown jewels and the ceremony of crowning a new monarch, according to The Guardian.

Speaking with the Imperial State Crown in front of her, the Queen said: “Fortunately, my father and I have about the same sort of shaped head. But once you put it on, it stays. I mean, it just remains on.”

The television programme also sees the Queen, who celebrates the 65th anniversary of her June 1953 coronation this year, speak of her mischievous children, a lost sceptre and a dress that was so heavy she got stuck on the carpet. The Daily Telegraph describes it as an “unrivalled insight into events behind-the-scenes”.

Bruce said the programme shows the Queen’s “most delightful sense of humour”, as she responds to his comments with twinkling eyes and deadpan delivery.

The documentary also reveals that priceless gems from the Crown Jewels were hidden underground in a biscuit tin at Windsor Castle during the Second World War in order to ensure that they did not fall into Nazi hands.

So what of the Queen’s four-tonne gold carriage? 

Horrible,” she said of the carriage ride from Buckingham Palace to the abbey where English monarchs have been crowned since 1066. “It’s only sprung on leather, not very comfortable.”

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