Queen eager to return to ‘nerve centre’ of Buckingham Palace to boost the nation’s morale


THE Queen is keen to return to the “nerve-centre” that is Buckingham Palace to help boost the nation’s morale after months in isolation, royal experts said today.

The 94-year-old monarch and her husband Prince Philip spent five months at Windsor as the coronavirus lockdown took hold before heading to Balmoral in August.

The Queen and Prince Philip, who released this picture to celebrate the duke’s 99th birthday, have been in lockdown

But by October, the palace announced Her Majesty is hoping to resume engagements at her London home.

And speaking to the Sun Online, royal expert Richard Fitzwilliams said the monarch knew how important it was to be present at the “headquarters” of the Royal Family. 

He said: “The fact the Queen is to reappear in London is important, especially as the capital has suffered with a lack of footfall during coronavirus.

“Her presence would undoubtedly be a boost to morale.

“The fact that we know she intends to perform select engagements there is evidence – she knows how symbolically important it is for her to return.”

The Queen and her 99-year-old husband Duke of Edinburgh headed to Windsor a week earlier than planned in March – going into lockdown there and protected by a ring-of-steel dubbed HMS Bubble.

They later travelled to Balmoral, in Aberdeenshire, at the start of August where they were able to enjoy socially distanced visits from family. 

But Mr Fitzwilliams said the Queen knew how important it was to return to the capital, explaining: “Buckingham Palace is what you would call the nerve-centre of the monarchy.

“Anything that involves the nation to come together in national unity you see in front of the palace, there is nothing that compares with it.”

Mr Fitzwilliams said that any future in-person events involving the Queen would be handled “with sensitivity” and in line with government guidance.

The Queen knighted Sir Thomas Moore at a socially distanced ceremony at Windsor – but is keen to return to Buckingham Palace

The Queen and Prince Philip were seen leaving Balmoral Castle

The Queen stands on the Buckingham Palace balcony with the Royal Family

But he added it was clear The Queen wanted to get back to “business as normal” as much as possible.

And Mr Fitzwilliams referenced the famous quote attributed to Her Majesty: “I have to be seen to be believed”.

He explained: “She has used Windsor brilliantly in broadcasts and events, whether it be knighting Sir Tom Moore or appearing virtually.

“But there is no doubt she sees the link between her presence at Buckingham Palace to national morale.”

A Buckingham Palace spokesman said: “The Queen and The Duke of Edinburgh will depart Balmoral Castle during the week commencing September 14 to spend time privately on the Sandringham Estate.

“Subject to the finalisation of the autumn programme, Her Majesty’s intention is to return to Windsor Castle in October and to resume the use of Buckingham Palace for selected Audiences and engagements.

“These plans will be kept under review and will of course be subject to all relevant guidance and advice.”

Prince Philip has also remained busy during the lockdown, celebrating his 99th birthday before stepping out of retirement to pass on his role as Colonel-in-Chief of The Rifles to Camilla Parker Bowles.

The retired royal also praised “vital” workers for their work during the pandmemic.

The couple also attended Princess Beatrice’s wedding in Windsor.

The Queen has participated in Zoom calls while in lockdown

Buckingham Palace is iconic

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