Queen Christmas message
Queen Elizabeth sits at a desk in the 18th Century Room at Buckingham Palace after recording her Christmas Day broadcast to the CommonwealthReuters

Queen Elizabeth's 63rd Christmas speech will deliver a message of hope for "moments of darkness" after a year marked by terrorist attacks and the refugee crisis. She will remind the nation that Christmas is "a time to remember all that we have to be thankful for".

The speech will be broadcast today (25 December) at 3pm GMT on radio and TV. The Queen – in a pre-recorded message – will say: "It is true that the world has had to confront moments of darkness this year, but the Gospel of John contains a verse of great hope, often read at Christmas carol services: 'The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness has not overcome it'."

2015 saw a series of deadly terror attacks across the world, including in Paris where 130 people were killed, Lebanon, Nigeria, Tunisia – where 30 out of the 38 people gunned down were British – and Syria. More than 250,000 people have died in the deadly civil war in Syria as millions have fled the bloodshed.

The Queen is also set to mark the 70th anniversary of the end of World War II by thanking those who took part in the conflict for their service and sacrifice. On a personal note, the monarch will also thank "the people who bring love and happiness into our own lives", including family.

The Queen traditionally writes her own Christmas speech, giving her a chance to share her views with the country. Her message will be broadcast across Commonwealth nations and it will also be shared on the Royal Channel on YouTube.

The head of state's message will be delivered from her desk in Buckingham Palace's 18th Century Room, which has a stunning Christmas tree in the background. She will be seen wearing a white and silver tweed day dress by Angela Kelly with an art deco diamond and aquamarine brooch on her left shoulder.