Brits Celebrate Queen's 85th Birthday
Annual Trooping the Colour ceremony salutes official birthday
By Polly Davis Doig,  Newser Staff
Posted Jun 11, 2011 7:28 AM CDT
Britain's Prince William, left, Prince Charles, center, and Duke of Kent, right, ride for the Trooping the Colour ceremony to mark the official birthday of the Queen in London, Saturday, June 11, 2011.   (AP Photo/Akira Suemori)
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(Newser) – Another British occasion, another display of crazy hats: London today rolled out the redcoats and bear-skin hats to fete Queen Elizabeth's 85th birthday—even though it's not her 85th birthday. The annual Trooping the Color ceremony, which dates from 1748, is held on a Saturday in June, when the weather is ostensibly better than the queen's real birthday, April 21. Catherine, the royal clan's newest duchess, nevertheless warded off the chill with a tartan blanket, notes the AP, whilst Prince William rode in the parade in the same Irish Guards uniform in which he married her.

The queen uses her official birthday to bestow honors. Among today's 965 recipients was British actor Colin Firth, of The King's Speech, who was named a Commander of the British Empire. Click through the photo gallery to get a look at the pomp.

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