After initial reports said that Queen Elizabeth II would be staying in Buckingham Palace during the COVID-19 pandemic as a sign of strength, reports now are that she will be moving up a planned holiday, putting her Windsor Castle a week earlier than expected. The palace also noted, Monday, that they are canceling large events where the coronavirus may spread.
Specific audiences, however, will remain on the Queen’s schedule.
“As a sensible precaution and for practical reasons in the current circumstances, a number of changes are being made to The Queen’s diary,” the royal family announced on its website Tuesday. “Audiences due to take place this week at Buckingham Palace will go ahead as planned. These include receiving the Prime Minister, the Commanding Officer of HMS QUEEN ELIZABETH and the Bishop of Hereford. Future Audiences will be reviewed on an ongoing basis, in line with the appropriate advice.”
The Queen was slated to stay in Buckingham Palace for the time being, but will decamp to Windsor Castle on Friday, taking an extra week’s vacation, likely as a response to “social distancing” protocols.
“Her Majesty will move to Windsor Castle for the Easter period on Thursday 19th March, one week earlier than planned. It is likely The Queen will stay there beyond the Easter period,” continued the statement. “In consultation with the Medical Household and Government, a number of public events with large numbers of people due to have been attended by The Queen, and other Members of the Royal Family, in the coming months will be cancelled or postponed.”
The events canceled include the Maundy Service at St George’s Chapel, three Garden Parties hosted by The Queen in May, and two other Garden Parties for the Not Forgotten Association and the National Trust. Guests invited to these parties will be reinvited for 2021.
The announcement on Tuesday comes just one day after reports said that the queen would remain in Buckingham Palace, contradicting a royal source who claimed the Queen had been whisked off to Windsor Castle for the duration of the pandemic.
“She is in good health but it was thought best to move her. A lot of her staff are a bit panicky over coronavirus,” a source told The Sun. “The Palace hosts a constant stream of visitors including politicians and dignitaries from around the world. The Queen has met a lot of people there until recently. But she is weeks away from her 94th birthday and advisers believe it is best to get her out of harm’s way.”
As The Daily Wire’s Emily Zanotti reported, the queen’s representatives said that she would remain in Buckingham Palace:
The Queen’s representatives, however, say that’s simply not true. Queen Elizabeth has been a source of strength for the British people through decades of crisis and she doesn’t plan on stopping now.
Although the Queen did travel out to Windsor Castle for the weekend, the Palace says the trip was a pre-planned weekend excursion and the Queen has returned to her London home.
Last week, British Prime Minister Boris Johnson declared that COVID-19 pandemic will be the worst public health crisis for a generation.
“This is the worst public crisis for a generation, some people compare it to seasonal flu, alas that is not right,” Johnson told reporters at an emergency COBRA. “Owing to the lack of immunity, this disease is more dangerous, and it’s going to spread further.”
“I must level with the British public, many more families are going to lose loved ones before their time,” he added.