10 Reasons Why Queen Elizabeth’s Reign Was So Successful. Queen Elizabeth II’s reign as Queen of England began with the death of her father, King George VI, on February 6, 1952 and has continued through June 2018. She is the longest reigning monarch in British history, having surpassed her great-great-grandmother Queen Victoria’s record 63 years and 216 days on September 9, 2015. Her reign has spanned 13 different Prime Ministers, 12 different US Presidents and 2 World Wars and stands to remain one of the most successful in British history. Today’s infographic looks at ten reasons why Queen Elizabeth’s reign was so successful.
1) She was raised to become queen
The first queen of England not to be a foreigner, and the last for almost 400 years, Princess Elizabeth was born at 10:30 in the morning on Friday, April 21st 1926. One of her birth names was actually chosen as a code name because she might have been called upon to rule due to the King having no children- she would rule over India as Elizabeth Alexandra Mary. Her birthday is officially celebrated in Canada and New Zealand now- though not in England. The Duke of York during this time period used the money he had inherited from his mother and father (his mother was Irish) to renovate Balmoral Castle and make it ready for his family- which at that point consisted only of Elizabeth. Princess Margaret didn’t come along until 1930.
2) Military victories in WWI
In 1914, when WWI started to ramp up, the Germans and their allies expected an easy victory. As a result, their advanced against Belgium but soon found themselves bogged down in trenches fighting the British forces. When Germany surrendered in 1918, they had to give up land that gave the British colonies access to vital resources like rubber and sugar. Without these essential supplies, the Germans were unable to continue fighting. When all was said and done there was a fifty-one percent decrease in casualties for Britain who relied on France for help (Kiernan).
3) A stable economy and growing national prestige
Since ascending to the throne in 1952, Queen Elizabeth has been responsible for a tremendous increase in Great Britain’s prestige. The monarchy has undergone significant changes since the early 20th century, evolving from a contentious institution to one that helped maintain stability and provided peace and prosperity. To see how the queen played an important role in this evolution, let’s explore some of her most notable contributions to British history:
During World War II, she weathered criticism and continued performing her duties as head of state while France fell to Nazi Germany. And after VE Day when King George VI died unexpectedly in 1952, she assumed a new title and secured her accession to the throne as Head of State which helped unify the Commonwealth.
She began traveling abroad extensively which led to increased national prestige.
4) British Empire expanded
It is a no-brainer that the rule of a British monarch helped to increase the size of their empire, as shown by more and greater access to foreign lands. What many people may not know is that during her reign, Queen Elizabeth helped to colonize America. This gave them more access to other countries, which led to an increase in exports and wealth for Great Britain as well as new settlements being established abroad. Furthermore, Great Britain developed scientific research thanks to discoveries such as electricity and x-rays while they were also one of the first European countries whose industrialization was fueled by coal power from 1829 onwards – which in turn further increased their economic influence on both continents. The prosperity of the Victorian era can be traced back to the reforms made by various monarchs before her like Henry VII and George III, but it was Queen Elizabeth who presided over this time period with wisdom and prudence. She encouraged trade with Asia and Africa whilst ensuring colonial expansion did not jeopardize relations with France or Spain; although she did have to deal with two failed wars against them. Her peace-keeping efforts were greatly appreciated after decades of conflict prior to her reign had depleted resources so much that people believed it would never end again. Thanks to her careful diplomacy, strong military alliances were forged with France against Spain who themselves had numerous enemies including Portugal, Austria, Naples, Holland and Russia.
5) Challenges of WWI were dealt with effectively
Rather than isolating the country or letting it wallow in its own grief, British society and government set out to rebuild as well as reinforce social ties. Programs such as Dig for Victory and Just a Pound of Coal became very popular during this time, with locals banding together to help one another out, even if they were not acquaintances beforehand. This was much different from how the French handled their situation: food rations were cut off following Nazi occupation while the use of German slave labor hindered progress.
6) People became more wealthy and consumerism took off
The 1950s and 60s saw the emergence of the middle-class householder, a segment of society whose wages afforded them luxuries not enjoyed by previous generations. These people benefitted greatly from both full employment and vastly improved standards of living. Industrial production was also at an all-time high, with Britons now owning cars and home appliances that they could never have dreamed of before. The era became a time of cultural transformation; English cooking stopped being basic, middle-class homes were now furnished with rugs and mahogany tables and live plants graced front windows. Marriage was no longer primarily about procreation but instead the needs for companionship in a fast changing world.
7) Major technological advancements took place
Revolutionary inventions and technologies, such as the internet, TV, and personal computers, greatly impacted society during the reign of Queen Elizabeth II. The first hand-held mobile phone was invented in 1992. In 2003, there were 10 million of these devices around the world. Computers became personal with Apple Macintosh computers released in 1984 and Microsoft windows released in 1985. Television sets became small enough to fit into every home when Sony launched its Trinitron model of televisions in 1968. Solar power became cost effective for powering homes thanks to Gerald Moler’s invention of a technique for making polycrystalline silicon photovoltaic cells inexpensively by using fewer steps that created solar panels less expensively.
8) The monarchy as an institution was highly respected after WWII
The monarchy as an institution was highly respected after WWII. Though there were many pressing economic, social and political matters to attend to, the British people showed loyalty and support for the crown. They believed in the symbolic value of what a King or Queen could bring them; hope for peace, progressiveness, fairness and transparency. In turn, this made it easier for citizens to believe in what their leaders were saying and do their part to help build a new Britain.
9) Rising tensions between India and Pakistan were prevented from turning into war by her wisdom
In 1971, when the Pakistan Army began a campaign of genocide against Bangladesh, she immediately flew there to console the widows and orphans. This wise and courageous act gave political voice to millions of women who had none. And for generations she has been their symbolic mother, rallying them around her with shrewdly chosen words. Such is her iconic standing that in 1999 Mother Teresa was reported as saying: My leader is not a political person but a woman–Queen Elizabeth.
The more limited powers of the crown have helped protect Britain from being vulnerable to autocratic rule–a fate shared by so many other countries throughout history. Finally, one can’t underestimate the public impact on world opinion when people see an attractive female head of state presiding over the country with such dignity and devotion!
10) Her constant attendance at public events contributed greatly to her popularity among the people
Queen Elizabeth made sure that she was seen as often as possible. She had a rule that on Sundays and holidays the Court was to stay up late so she could attend midnight church services, and she always took part in royal rituals such as coronations and royal weddings. Her constant attendance at public events contributed greatly to her popularity among the people.
Although she did not want it to seem like someone else’s job, her duty was to keep herself and her family, the Royal Family, publicly visible at all times in order to maintain their popularity. She also presided over magnificent state occasions that were enjoyed by everyone who could attend – both rich and poor, men and women alike.
While there were many factors that contributed to her success, a number of them come down to one word: luck. Despite this factor, the incredible stability and peace she brought during her reign is still nothing short of remarkable. For this reason alone, we owe Queen Elizabeth a debt of gratitude.
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