The Queen and her connections to Derby during her 70 year reign

ITV News Central correspondent Phil Brewster reflects on the Queen's visit to Derby throughout her reign.

Sadness continues to sweep across the nation and the world following the news of the Queen's death.

Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II has died at the age of 96, after 70 years of reign.

During that time, the Monarch has visited the Midlands several times, including several trips to Derby and Derbyshire.

One of which was to open Derby County's Pride Park Stadium back in 1997 where she was joined by Prince Philip.

Here at ITV News we have pulled together a list of the times she has visited the city of Derby and Derbyshire during her reign.

Visit in 1957

Elizabeth II had visited Derby before being crowned Queen back in 1949 to open the council house in the city.

Her first visit as Queen came in 1957 where she also visited Burton, Tutbury and Repton.

During her visit she inspected a Guard of Honour in Derby's Market Place before going to Leylands.

City status in 1977

Queen Elizabeth II granting Derby the status of a city, during her Silver Jubilee tour of Great Britain Credit: Ron Bell/PA Archive/PA Images

The Queen's next visit came in 1977 in the year of her Silver Jubilee when she granted Derby city status.

Derby was the only town to be given city status during the celebrations.

Thousands of people turned out to see the Queen as she came to Derby, lining the streets.

The Queen also opened the Derbyshire police HQ in Butterly Hall.

Visit to Thorntons in 1985

The Queen's next visit to the area came in 1985 when she visited the Thornton's chocolate factory in Swanwick to officially open the new site.

She also visited Elizabeth's Grammar School in Ashbourne to mark the 400th anniversary of the site.

The company's Swiss confiseur, Walter Willen, decorated Easter eggs destined for her grandchildren. Credit: PA/PA Archive/PA Images

Carsington visit in 1992

In May of 1992, the Queen was once again in Derbyshire, this time to officially open Carsington Water.

During her visit, she also went to Queen's Leisure Centre, in Derby and Derbyshire Royal Infirmary.

Carsington Water in Derbyshire Credit: Danny Lawson/PA Archive/PA Images

Pride Park Stadium 1997

One of her most famous and iconic visits to the city came in 1997 to officially open Pride Park Stadium.

After playing at the famous Baseball Ground between 1895 and 1997, the club’s Chairman at the time Lionel Pickering made the decision to move to a brand-new home.

Rams boss Jim Smith also spoke to Her Majesty before taking in the new stadium in a specially-adapted Range Rover. Credit: BPM Media

Her Majesty The Queen accepted the invitation to open the Rams’ new surroundings and a plaque takes pride of place in the Main Reception for all visitors to see upon their arrival.

The first-ever match was played at Pride Park Stadium was against Italian side Sampdoria two weeks later, on 4th August 1997 in a pre-season friendly.

The Queen met Derby players and was then escorted around the ground to greet supporters. Credit: BPM Media

Pride Park Stadium was the first football ground that had been opened by the Queen and she returned to the ground in 2002 as part of her Golden Jubilee celebrations.

Maundy money service 2010

On another visit to the city, the Queen attended what was thought to be the 800th Maundy money service at Derby Cathedral.

Every Maundy Thursday, The Queen distributes special Maundy money to pensioners in a service which commemorates Jesus washing the feet of the Apostles at the Last Supper.

Derby Cathedral Credit: Joe Giddens/PA Archive/PA Images

The Maundy Service happens each year on the Thursday before Easter Sunday.

Early in her reign, The Queen decided Maundy money should not just be distributed to the people of London.

Thousands of people once again lined the streets to get a glimpse of the Monarch as she came to the city.