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Britain's Queen Elizabeth the second will become one of the world's longest serving monarchs in 2012, celebrating her Diamond Jubilee after sixty years on the throne. Preparations are underway for a nationwide celebration in the UK, to mark a truly historic occasion.
Queen Elizabeth II became monarch in 1952.
Queen Elizabeth II ascended to the throne in 1952 following the death of her father, King George VI.
She was born in London on April 21 1926 - becoming Queen at the age of 25.
She became heir to the throne when her uncle, Edward Vlll, abdicated to marry American divorcee Wallace Simpson, making her father king.
Queen Elizabeth is one of Europe's longest surviving monarchs. Like her great, great grandmother, Queen Victoria, before her, she is celebrating 60 years on the throne.
Ingrid Seward, royal biographer and commentator, said, "She may well be the last member of her family who has such utmost devotion to duty. Duty before self and I feel that people will look at her and think this woman actually has given up her entire life for duty, to serve her subjects and I think that what is the most remarkable thing about her."
2002 marked Elizabeth's Golden Jubilee as queen. It was a difficult year for her personally. Her sister, Princess Margaret, died in the February and her mother died a month later.
When the Queen left Buckingham Palace for her Golden Jubilee procession she was greeted with rapturous applause and cheers.
In October 2011 her visit to Australia brought tens of thousand out to see her.
Fashion editor Hilary Alexander says the Queen's appearance won her more admirers.
Hilary Alexander said, "she chooses fabulous colours, I think she's just got a bold and confident sense of wearing colour. You only need to look at the tour of Australia, that shocking pink and the fuchsia, you know with the matching hat. Completely sensational."
Celebrations marking 60 years of The Queen's reign will include a massive pageant on the River Thames where the Queen's golden barge will lead a flotilla of a thousand boats.
A big televised concert will be held at Buckingham Palace featuring acts from the Commonwealth, and beacons will be lit by communities throughout the country.
The occasion will culminate in a service of thanksgiving at St. Pauls Cathedral and later in the month will be the Trooping the Colour to mark the Queen's official birthday.
An extra Bank Holiday has also been created for the first weekend in June.