Recently it came to our attention that for the last twenty-five years, Queen Elizabeth II of England has had a stand-in!
The Queen’s Stand-In: Ella Slack
Ella Slack is a retired former manager of the sports and events group at the BBC turned stand-in for Her Majesty. Standing at just under 5’0″, Slack is nearly two inches shorter than the Queen and does not resemble her first-teamer — at least in the face. Slack’s build is similar to the Queen’s, and her being in the right spot at the right time may have also helped her land the gig. In arranging a Cenotaph shoot in 1988, Slack offered to stand in for the Queen, and after standing in amid traffic for two hours, the job became hers.
Unlike most professional stand-ins, Slack is unpaid for her work serving the Queen, citing it is “a pleasure and an honour” to do so. Yet like many stand-ins, she gets to experience locations that few people get to experience. From walking onto the Windsor Castle dais to sitting in a royal landau, Slack rehearses the actions the Queen does for ceremonies and sits where the Queen gets to sit, helping to ensure sun doesn’t get into the Her Majesty’s eyes, boarding and getting out of vehicles is smooth, sound is not too loud around the Queen, and the speed at which others walk around the Queen is adjusted to her pace. Slack has stood in for the Queen on more than fifty occasions.
An Interview with Ella Slack
In this morning show interview from May 2012 (starting at 2:53), Ella Slack is interviewed about her experiences as Her Majesty’s stand-in.
More Information on Ella Slack’s Work as a Stand-In
Article on Ella Slack, stand-in for Queen Elizabeth II, with photo (from Crave Online, July 15, 2013)
Article on Ella Slack, with photos (from the Daily Mail, May 25, 2012)
Detailed anecdotes from Ella Slack’s work as a stand-in (from the Daily Mirror, May 26, 2012)
Do you know the stand-in for a famous public figure? Do you stand in on events and ceremonies? If so, share your experiences below!