Queen Elizabeth Did Not Flee Buckingham Palace Due to Coronavirus Fears
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The longest-ruling monarch in U.K. history had taken a regular trip to her residence in Windsor for the weekend, but she is expected back at the palace this week as usual, a palace spokesperson says.
Her trip comes as the royal family has decided to cancel and postpone several of their trips and events amid the global pandemic.
Last week, the Queen canceled her scheduled visits to Cheshire and Camden for the upcoming week “as a sensible precaution and for practical reasons in the current circumstances.”
Prince Charles and Camilla, Duchess of Cornwall, also canceled their royal tour, which was set to begin on March 17 and end on March 25, with stops in Bosnia and Herzegovina, the Republic of Cyprus and Jordan.
“Owing to the unfolding situation with the Coronavirus pandemic, The British Government has asked Their Royal Highnesses to postpone their spring tour to Bosnia and Herzegovina, Cyprus and Jordan,” their office said in a statement.
The Prince of Wales has also been using an alternative to the formal handshake amid the outbreak, offering a namaste to greet others at royal engagements.
Charles first started using the gesture at the Commonwealth Service, where Meghan Markle, Prince Harry, Kate Middleton and Prince William also appeared to refrain from shaking hands with fellow attendees.
Similarly, the Queen recently wore gloves to an investiture ceremony.
It is not uncommon for the Queen to wear gloves, but she has not been known to wear them during an investiture ceremony when she’s awarding honors and shaking hands with members of the public.
Harry’s trip to the U.K. in April for the London Marathon has also been postponed, as the sporting event was pushed back to Oct. 4, according to the BBC.
“The world is in an unprecedented situation, grappling with a global pandemic of COVID-19, and public health is everyone’s priority,” event director Hugh Brasher said in a statement released on Friday.
As of March 15, there have been 1,143 confirmed cases of coronavirus and 21 total deaths in the U.K., according to a Johns Hopkins database. A total of 19 people in the U.K. have recovered from the virus.