- The Buckingham Palace balcony has become the iconic setting of many royal weddings and historical events over the years.
- The Trooping the Colour parade is the one event where we are guaranteed to see the royals, all together, on the balcony each year.
- The parade, which celebrates the Queen’s birthday, is set to take place again on Saturday, June 8.
- In celebration of the upcoming event, INSIDER has rounded up the most unforgettable moments on the Buckingham Palace balcony from over the years.
- Visit INSIDER’s homepage for more stories.
The Buckingham Palace balcony has provided the backdrop for many unforgettable moments throughout the years.
The first kiss after the wedding of Prince Charles and Diana Spencer, and years later, Prince William and Kate Middleton, took place there, to the delight of thousands of cheering fans below.
There have also been moments that have fallen more on the bizarre side of things, like the time a protester dressed up like Batman managed to scale the palace walls – only to be sent back down again by a cherry-picker and a police escort.
But the one event fans have to look forward to every year is the Trooping the Colour parade. Over 1,400 parading soldiers, 200 horses, and 400 musicians come together in June of each year to celebrate the Queen’s official birthday.
The Queen, surrounded by other members of the royal family, watches the parade from the Buckingham Palace balcony each year.
Last year, we watched Meghan Markle make her debut at the parade. While there has been no announcement made as to whether she will attend with baby Archie this year, many fans are hopeful that we’ll see another glimpse of the new baby.
While we wait to find out more about this year’s event, which takes place on Saturday, June 8, INSIDER has rounded up the most unforgettable photos taken of the royals on the Buckingham Palace balcony.
Queen Elizabeth II — then Princess Elizabeth — and Prince Philip married on November 20, 1947.
Following their wedding ceremony at Westminster Abbey, the couple, who were 21 and 26 respectively, waved to well-wishers with the rest of their wedding party from the Buckingham Palace balcony.
The couple’s first son, Prince Charles, was born in 1948. In this photo, Elizabeth appears to be scolding him for misbehaving during the Trooping the Colour parade in 1951.
Queen Elizabeth II and Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh, celebrated their official coronation on June 2, 1953.
Thousands of fans turned up to see the new monarch wave to crowds from the balcony. The event itself was the first ever coronation to be televised, and it was watched by 27 million people in the UK alone.
The Queen’s sister, Princess Margaret, married Tony Armstrong-Jones on May 6, 1960. This photo was a light-hearted change to the previous images taken on the balcony, as the pair were photobombed by an unsuspecting flower girl.
Prince Edward was born on March 10, 1964. Just three months later, the Queen and Prince Philip showed off their new son at Trooping the Colour.
During that same event, the Queen and Prince Philip took part in a horse procession on the palace grounds.
The Queen’s only daughter, Princess Anne, married Mark Phillips on November 14, 1973. The couple waved to the crowds with their flower girl and page boy …
… the family even shared a laugh together during the photocall, banishing the stiff-upper-lip persona that many royals had been painted in the past.
At just 19-years-old, Princess Diana joined the royals for her first Trooping the Colour parade in June 1981. This was the month before her wedding to Prince Charles, leading many to believe the family broke their own “no ring, no bring” policy by allowing her to attend.
The couple’s next appearance on the balcony came on their wedding day, July 29, 1981. After Charles planted a kiss on Diana’s hand, the crowds began chanting “Giver her a kiss” …
… and the couple obliged, becoming the first royal couple to kiss publicly, for all the world to see. This changed the wedding protocol for future generations to come.
Prince William made his balcony debut during Trooping the Colour of 1984. In this photo, Princess Diana holds him up so he can see the thousands of fans gathered below.
Prince Harry’s first appearance in June 1985 didn’t go as smoothly. While the rest of the family pose for the cameras, Charles and Diana try to settle down the restless little one.
The following year, Harry took centre stage yet again. In this photo, Princess Anne holds him up so he can watch the parade.
The British public was treated to another royal wedding on July 23, 1986. In this photo, Prince Andrew and Sarah Ferguson followed Charles and Diana’s lead by saving their first wedding kiss for the balcony.
Before there was Meghan and Kate, there was Sarah and Diana. The pair were seen sharing a laugh during Trooping the Colour 1987 — the first of many attended together by the royal wives.
During the 1988 parade, Prince Harry surprised the crowds — and his mother — by pulling this hilarious face for the camera.
The family made a special appearance on the balcony for the Queen Mother’s 100th birthday celebrations on August 4, 2000.
A crowd of 40,000 turned out to celebrate with Her Majesty and the rest of the family.
The Queen celebrated her Golden Jubilee on June 3, 2002. In this photo, fans watch on a projector screen as she greets the crowd from the balcony.
The following balcony appearance wasn’t so official. A Fathers 4 Justice campaigner dressed as Batman managed to scale the palace wall …
… ultimately, to be taken back down again by a cherry-picker and a police escort. At least he didn’t look too disheartened.
Kate Middleton and Prince William made their first joint balcony appearance after their Westminster Abbey nuptials on April 29, 2011.
They were joined by their wedding party. Prince Harry and Kate’s sister, Pippa Middleton, shared a laugh as they posed for photos.
The Metropolitan Police estimated that one million people turned out to watch the wedding parade. There were 5,000 police officers on patrol for 24 hours after the ceremony.
Middleton attended her first Trooping the Colour parade later that same year …
… clearly, the new duchess couldn’t contain her excitement for the event.
Middleton and William’s first child, Prince George, made an appearance at the 2015 parade. However, instead of posing on the balcony like the rest of the family, he gave the crowds a cheeky wave from a nearby window.
Prince George and his younger sister, Princess Charlotte, took centre stage the following year.
But during the 2017 event, the pair weren’t too amused by the waiting photographers.
Last year’s Trooping the Colour saw the newly married Meghan Markle make her debut.
The Duke and Duchess were the centre of attention— after all, they had only just tied the knot the month before.
The “Fab Four” made a rare appearance together that July. The family watched a flypast to mark the centenary of the RAF.
All in all, a lot has changed in the year since we last saw the royals on the balcony. Thankfully, we won’t have to wait much longer for the next photo op, as Trooping the Colour takes place again on Saturday, June 8.
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