Queen Elizabeth's birthday message captures UK's solemn national mood

And she and The Prince of Wales earlier this month attended church services, where they prayed for the victims of the London Bridge attack, which resulted in seven deaths.

Buckingham Palace released the message, which said it was "difficult to escape a very sombre national mood" after the tragedies. This year, however, it is hard to escape a very sombre national mood. He talked emotionally about the Grenfell Tower tragedy, which has claimed the lives of at least 30 people and described the fire as "one of the most awful things I have ever seen".

She became queen in 1952, aged 25.

The queen's actual birthday is on April 21, but she has an official birthday on the second Saturday in June, when the Trooping the Colour military parade - which this year will feature Prince William on horseback - takes place in central London.

She continues, "During recent visits in Manchester and London, I have been profoundly struck by the immediate inclination of people throughout the country to offer comfort and support to those in desperate need".

The Queen visited the Royal Manchester Children's Hospital following the attack at Manchester Arena during an Ariana Grande concert, which left 22 people dead.

"Put to the test, the United Kingdom has been resolute in the face of adversity. United in our sadness, we are equally determined, without fear or favour, to support all those rebuilding so disgusting affected by injury and loss".

The Queen used her official birthday to award the police officer killed in March's Westminster attack with a posthumous honour.

Speaking about the honour, Metropolitan Police Commissioner Cressida Dick, said: "He paid the ultimate price for his selfless actions".

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