Published: 24 April 2014
The British Embassies in the UAE held events on the evenings of Tuesday 22 April and Wednesday 23rd April to celebrate the 88th birthday of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II.

On behalf of the UAE Government, the guests of honour in Abu Dhabi were His Highness Sheikh Nahyan bin Mubarak Al Nahyan, Minister of Culture, Youth and Community Development and Her Highness Sheikha Lubna bint Khalid Al Qasimi, Minister of Development and International Cooperation. Her Highness Sheikha Lubna was also the guest of honour at the Dubai celebration. A number of representatives from Northern Emirates' Ruling Courts were also present for the event in Dubai.

The events took place at the respective Embassy Gardens and were attended by a number of senior dignitaries, business families, political figures, representatives of diplomatic missions and expatriates in the UAE. Celebrations were launched by the playing of the National Anthems of the UAE and the United Kingdom, followed by cake cutting and speeches by Her Majesty's Ambassador to the UAE, Mr Dominic Jermey and Her Majesty's Consul General in Dubai, Mr Edward Hobart. British Minister of State for the Armed Forces, Mark Francois MP also spoke at the event. The Queen's Birthday Party is also the National Day of the United Kingdom and the events served as important opportunities to reflect on the longstanding and special relationship between Britain and the UAE. 

Iconic British luxury performance car maker Aston Martin was present in both cities to mark the celebrations. Presenting a selection of its finest range of cars, Aston Martin added style and charisma to the very special event held in honour of Her Majesty. Other sponsors for the event in Abu Dhabi included BP, Atkins, Shell and Molton Brown.

At both events guests were entertained by a marching display and live music by British Military Band, The Salamanca Band and Bugles of The Rifles, and enjoyed quintessentially British food and drink.

Speaking at the event Her Majesty's Ambassador Dominic Jermey said:

"The Queen's Birthday Party is always an important occasion for us to celebrate and honour the special partnership between the UK and UAE, and above all to thank our Emirati hosts for their continued support for the bilateral relationship and the spirit with which they help this to flourish. The occasion demonstrates the importance the British people, our Government and Her Majesty the Queen attach to the relationship. There is much to be proud of in the longstanding friendship that spans well over two centuries and I'm delighted that I and my teams in Abu Dhabi and Dubai are playing our part in building stronger, wider and deeper bonds between our two great countries."

Her Majesty's Consul General Edward Hobart said:

"In the year of Her Majesty the Queen's 88th birthday I'm delighted to see so many friends who work tirelessly to strengthen and nurture the already deep and vibrant ties between the UK and Dubai. These ties span the full bilateral spectrum from trade and investment to thriving education - and everything in between. I believe the success of this relationship is down to commitment, cooperation and a shared spirit to prosper for our peoples. The British contribution to Dubai is impressive and I look forward to finding new, ambitious and concrete ways of doing more together to deliver on our joint goals."

Also speaking on the occasion Neil Slade, General Manager, Aston Martin MENA, said:

"It brings us immense pleasure, as a traditional British luxury car marque, to wish Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II well on her 88th birthday. This day brings joy to the people of the United Kingdom and to us, as a brand renowned for its inimitable, elegant British characteristics. It has been a matter of delight for Aston Martin to be present at the British Embassy to celebrate this day and we, once again, congratulate Her Majesty on this special occasion."

Photos: 1) Vanquish in Union Jack Print; 2) Middle East Regional GM Neil Slade with The British Consul General Mr. Edward Hobart