Queen cancels holiday travel over new COVID-19 spike in UK

Buckingham Palace today confirmed that Queen Elizabeth II canceled the traditional royal family gathering at Sandringham in Norfolk and will remain in Windsor Castle for the Christmas holidays.

According to Buckingham Palace aides, the queen’s decision is a “personal one” and is a “precautionary approach,” taken amid spiking number of new COVID-19 cases in the United Kingdom.

Royal Family members will be joining the queen instead at Windsor, where the 95-year-old monarch has spent much of the pandemic, over the holidays. The queen previously canceled a holiday lunch with extended family out of precaution over the coronavirus pandemic and Omicron strain of the COVID-19 virus. 

“All appropriate guidelines will be followed” for potential visitors of the queen over the Christmas period, the palace aides added.

The UK announced more than 90,000 new COVID-19 cases today, with two of the previous three days also seeing jumps of 90,000. 

Her Majesty also stayed in Windsor last year due to the COVID-19 pandemic. This will be her first Christmas without her husband, Prince Philip, who passed away earlier this year.

Britain’s royal family traditionally celebrates Christmas by walking from the Sandringham estate to a nearby church for holiday services.

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