Queen Elizabeth II – 1962 Queen’s Speech


Below is the text of the speech made by HM Queen Elizabeth II in the House of Lords on 30 October 1962.

My Lords and Members of the House of Commons:

My Husband and I greatly look forward to our coming visit to Australia and New Zealand. I have the happiest recollection of our visit in 1953 and 1954. and it is a source of deep pleasure to Me that we can renew our acquaintance with those great and growing members of the Commonwealth.

My Government have been shocked by the invasion of Indian territory by Chinese armies. They fully support India’s decision to defend her rightful frontiers.

My Government regard the development and improvement of relations between East and West as one of the most important aims of their policy. They will maintain their support for the United Nations, and they will continue to work for international agreement on general and complete disarmament. They will persevere in their efforts to secure a treaty banning nuclear tests.

My Government were gravely concerned at the dangers of the recent introduction of offensive missiles into Cuba. They have played their full part in close consultation with My allies, in efforts to deal with the critical situation which arose. My Government were glad to learn that those missiles are to be dismantled under the supervision of the United Nations. They will co-operate with My allies in seeking wider agreements in the field of controlled disarmament.

My Government will continue, in conjunction with My allies, to seek to achieve by negotiation a settlement of the Berlin question which will preserve the security and freedom of the people of West Berlin.

My Government will seek to strengthen the bonds which link the countries of the North Atlantic Alliance, which has a powerful contribution to make in maintaining the peace of the world. My Government will also take a full part in the work of other international bodies of which the United Kingdom is a member and will strive by all possible means to ensure the security and increase the prosperity of all countries in the free world.

In co-operation with My allies, My Armed Forces will maintain their contribution to the prevention of war.

My Government have welcomed the proposals put forward by the United Nations for conciliation in the Congo. It is their hope that the fair implementation of these proposals may lead to the co-operation of all elements in the Congo in the vital task of reconstructing that country.

My Ministers recognise the great political and economic importance of the development of the European Communities and the opportunities which British accession to these Communities would bring. In close consultation with the other members of the Commonwealth and of the European Free Trade Association, and having full regard for those interests in the United Kingdom which are particularly concerned, they will use every effort to bring the current negotiations to a conclusion acceptable to Parliament.

In pursuance of the plan for the proposed new Federation of Malaysia, detailed discussions are proceeding and in due course legislation will be laid before you.

You will be asked to make provision for extending the present powers of the Colonial Development Corporation.

My Ministers will encourage men and women from this country to offer their services for work in developing countries overseas, whether in the service of the other Governments concerned, as specialist advisers, or under schemes of voluntary recruitment.

Members of the House of Commons:

Estimates for the public services will be laid before you.

My Lords and Members of the House of Commons:

My Ministers will continue to promote efficient and sound expansion of the national economy, with a high and stable level of employment.

My Ministers will pursue their aim of improving the balance of oversea payments and maintaining the strength of sterling. In co-operation with other Governments they will give constant attention to means of sustaining a rising level of world trade.

My Government are resolved to maintain a stable, efficient and prosperous agricultural industry. They will lay before you proposals on certain miscellaneous questions affecting agriculture. The fishing industry will continue to receive help and support.

My Government will promote further improvements in the social conditions and in the housing, health and welfare of My People.

Plans will be laid before you for the development in England and Wales over the next decade of the health and welfare services of the local authorities, in parallel with the development of the hospitals.

A Bill will be introduced to extend the powers of local authorities in connection with the care of children, and to give effect to other recommendations which have been made by the Committee on Children and Young Persons.

Fresh provision will be made for securing the health, safety and welfare of persons employed in shops and offices.

A Bill will be introduced to increase the pensions of retired members of the public services and their dependants.

The position of war pensioners and those who are receiving national insurance benefits will be kept under close review.

My Government will continue to give attention to measures for the further protection of consumers. They will introduce legislation to bring up to date and extend the Weights and Measures Acts and they will establish a Consumer Council to represent and promote the interests of consumers.

My Government propose to introduce a Bill which will require employers to give their employees written statements about terms of employment and will prescribe minimum periods of notice.

Continued attention will be given to improving the supply of teachers for the schools. The expansion of university and technical education will continue.

Legislation will be proposed for the reorganisation of local government in Greater London.

Legislation will be required to amend and continue the operation of the Television Act, 1954.

A Bill will be introduced to provide for the conservation and development of water resources in England and Wales.

Bills will be laid before you to amend the criminal law of Scotland and make provision regarding legal aid in criminal cases, to revise the arrangements for paying grants to Scottish local authorities and to amend the law relating to education in Scotland.

Other measures will be laid before you.

My Lords and Members of the House of Commons:

I pray that the blessing of Almighty God may rest upon your counsels.