Queen Elizabeth dies aged 96

Queen Elizabeth II, the longest-reigning monarch in British history, has died at the age of 96.

“The Queen died peacefully at Balmoral this afternoon,” the Buckingham Palace said.

Prince Charles, 73, heir to the throne since the age of three, is now king.

The King and The Queen Consort will remain at Balmoral this evening and will return to London tomorrow.

The Queen’s death brings to an end the longest reign in the history of the United Kingdom, and one of the longest reigns by any head of state.

Elizabeth II became Queen on the death of her father King George VI on 6 February 1952. She held her coronation at Westminster Abbey the following year.

Her reign of 70 years was seven years longer than that of Queen Victoria.

Leading the monarchy from the final years of the British Empire into the age of social media, she became one of the world’s most recognised and respected figures

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