Queen Elizabeth’s Christmas message, which was recorded earlier in Buckingham Palace, was broadcast today. It is her 57th message, in what has become a popular part of public Christmas celebrations in the U.K. You can watch the broadcast in the video below, via The Royal Channel on YouTube.


Queen Elizabeth called 2009 “a difficult year for many”. She touched on the major themes of the war in Afghanistan, the global recession, and the unity and strength of the Commonwealth of nations.


Here are some important about the history of this Christmas tradition:

1932 – King George V issued the monarch’s annual Christmas message

1952 – Queen Elizabeth’s first Christmas broadcast, after the death of her father King George VI

1957 – first televised broadcast (live)

1960 – pre-recording of the broadcast began

2007 – Queen Elizabeth’s message was first broadcast on YouTube

image via Zuma Press