Royal watchers can track British Queen on website

Thu Feb 12, 2009 8:50am EST
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LONDON (Reuters) - More than 30 years after she sent her first email, the Queen will unveil a new version of her website on Thursday that allows her subjects to keep track of the royal family using an online map.

The revamped site,, displays the royals' past and future engagements on an interactive Google map.

Other features include direct links to royal video clips on YouTube, job listings and a new section on the royals' animals.

There are currently openings for trainee butlers, whose duties include delivering "tea and coffee trays, breakfast trays and newspapers ... in an efficient and discreet manner."

While the Queen has yet to start a blog, the site will have new audio and video footage, including her first public speech.

Broadcast on October 13, 1940 while she was still Princess Elizabeth, the speech was a message to the children of the Commonwealth, many of them living away from home due to World War Two.

With a discreet royal crest at the top of each page and a clear layout, the site is designed to be more user-friendly. It is the third version of the site, first launched in 1997.

The Queen will inaugurate it at a Buckingham Palace reception with scientist Tim Berners-Lee, who invented the World Wide Web while working at the CERN laboratory in Switzerland.

The Queen sent her first email in 1976 during a visit to an army base.

(Reporting by Peter Griffiths, editing by Paul Casciato)

<p>Queen Elizabeth leaves Sandringham church following the annual Christmas Day church service at Sandringham Estate in Norfolk, east England December 25, 2008. REUTERS/Toby Melville</p>