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1979: Queen oversees Manx millennium

VIDEO : Footage of the ceremony with commentary from BBC's Eric Robson

The Queen has presided over the 1000th annual open-air sitting of the Isle of Man's Parliament, Tynwald.

According to Manx tradition, the Queen is the Lord of Mann, but she is only the second British monarch to fulfil this duty in person. The last was her father King George VI in 1945

The ancient rituals of the Manx National Day began as soon as the Queen arrived at Ronaldsway Airport when she was given a piece of silver fern to ward off evil spirits.

Regal pageantry

At Tynwald, St John's, the royal party was greeted by crowds of well-wishers, a 21-gun salute and a Guard of Honour.

Dressed in a fuchsia pink coat and pale pink turban Her Majesty took her place on Tynwald Hill to witness the traditional ceremonies.

The hill is a distinctive four-tiered, circular mound that hosts and symbolizes the Manx Government - the oldest continuous parliament in the world.

After the Acts of Tynwald had been read out the Queen presented staves of office to the 24 members of the House of Keys - the lower elected parliament - and received petitions from the public.

Before leaving the former Viking island the Queen attended a church service and opened a school.

She presented the Manx people with a simple cross and a pair of silver falcons given to her on behalf of Tynwald.

Facts on Man


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