The Queen unveils a monument to the women of World War Two, 9 July 2005
As part of this year's commemorations to mark the end of World War Two, The Queen will unveil a monument to honour the 7,100,000 women who contributed to the British and Allied victory.
Baroness Boothroyd of Sandwell, who is Patron of The Women of World War II Trust, will make a speech before The Queen officially unveils the monument.
The monument depicts 17 sets of women's clothing, some of them military uniforms, hanging on pegs, and is intended to symbolise the hundreds of roles which women carried out from 1939 - 45, and their return home once the war was over.
The day's events
Following the National Anthem and a flypast of helicopters crewed by women of the three Services, the monument will be dedicated by the Bishop of London.
Baroness Boothroyd of Sandwell, Patron of The Women of World War II Trust, will make a speech. The Queen will then unveil the monument.
A bouquet will be presented to Her Majesty by a woman veteran and a servicewoman.
The Queen will attend a Reception at MOD attended by women veterans from all Fronts in the Second World War. The entrance to the MOD will be lined by female King's Troop RHA and The Princess Royal's Volunteer Corps/FANY.
After viewing a display on the monument, Her Majesty will meet guests including a group of female George Medal winners.
The sculptor John Mills
The sculptor John Mills won the commission to design the statue in an open competition involving 12 sculptors. The brief asked for a monument to all the Women of World War Two, not individuals. Mr Mill's design sprang from his own memories of the war and of his aunts, neighbours and of his mother's work in munitions. The final form and size of the memorial were evolved in collaboration between the sculptor and the architects, Giles Quarme and Associates who played a key part in obtaining consent for the memorial's Whitehall location. Another of Mills' works is Blitz, the National Fire-fighters Memorial which stand outside St Paul's Cathedral.
The Women of World War Two Trust
The appeal to raise the monument was launched eight years ago by its chairman, Major David Robertson who is President of the Ack Ack Command reunion within the Royal Artillery Association. He did so in response to a letter from a Canadian former female gunner.
The National Heritage Memorial Fund has also contributed to the memorial.
The Queen and World War Two
In 1942, aged 16, Princess Elizabeth (now The Queen) insisted on registering for war service and appeared at the Windsor office in her Girl Guide uniform only to be told that she was too young.
She was, however, able to play her part by becoming a Councillor of State in 1944, signing State documents whilst the King was busy visiting forces overseas (having visited Normandy, the King visited troops in Italy and the Low Countries later in the year).
When she was old enough, she enlisted as a officer in the Auxiliary Territorial Service (the women's Army) after taking a vehicle maintenance course. In the end, the Princess's services were not required as the war ended not long after she had enlisted.
From the British Royal Website: