Windsor at the age of 101, Buckingham Palace announced. "Queen Elizabeth died peacefully in her sleep at 3.15 (local time) this afternoon at Royal Lodge (Windsor)," the palace said in a statement. "The Queen was at her mother’s bedside," the Palace said.

Palace officials added she "had become increasingly frail in recent weeks following her bad cough and chest infection over Christmas." The news came as the Queen and other members of the Royal Family prepared to attend Easter service as planned at St George’s Chapel, Windsor. "Her condition deteriorated this morning and her doctors were called," Buckingham Palace said.


The Queen Mother’s death comes less than two months after she attended the funeral of her younger daughter, Princess Margaret, who died on 9 February at the age of 71. She was born Elizabeth Bowes-Lyon, on 4 August, 1900, the ninth of 10 children of Lord and Lady Glamis. In 1923 she married the young Prince Albert, the second son of George V, who later become George VI.

In 1926 they celebrated the birth of their first child, Elizabeth – the present Queen. Another daughter, Margaret-Rose was born four years later. Quite unexpectedly, Elizabeth was thrust into the role of consort to the monarch, the new George VI, after Edward VIII was forced to give up the for deciding to marry an American, Wallace Simpson.


They were crowned in May 1937 and despite their relative lack of experiences they soon became the symbol of Britain’s resistance along with the Prime Minister Winston Churchill. When London was attacked by Nazi Germany’s forces, she stayed in the capital to offer moral support, and narrowly escaped injury when the palace was bombed.

She was 51 when her husband, the King, died of cancer, but soon resumed her public duties as the new Queen Mother, while her daughter became the present monarch Queen Elizabeth. The Queen Mother’s popularity continued throughout he decades, royal watchers said. Her birthdays became something of a national ritual. Analysts point out that although her final years were clouded by some of the problems of the Royal Family itself – the criticisms never centred on the Queen Mother.


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