The Queen stepped out of Windsor Castle in the midst of the second lockdown in England to attend one of the most poignant events in her annual schedule – the service at the Cenotaph. For the fourth time since 2017, the Queen watched her son and heir Prince Charles laying a wreath of red poppies on the Cenotaph in Whitehall, London, on her behalf.
The monarch cut a lonely figure as she stood on one of the balconies of the Foreign and Commonwealth Office facing the monument.
Over the past three years, when she chose to leave Prince Charles leading the service of Remembrance, the Queen was always in the company of two more royals on the balcony.
In 2017 she was with Prince Philip and Camilla, while last year she was with Camilla, Duchess of Cornwall, and Kate, Duchess of Sussex.
However, this year, due to the Government guidelines on coronavirus, the monarch was standing on the balcony only in the company of her lady-in-waiting.
Ahead of the solemn ceremony, the Queen decided to wear a sombre outfit, donning a black coat with a matching hat.
On her lapel, the monarch had pinned a beautiful silver brooch with five red poppies.
As 11am struck, the Queen fell silent for two minutes, quietly paying tribute to those who have fallen in line of duty.
READ MORE: Prince Charles: ‘No virus can stop us honouring them’
This year’s ceremony has been marked by social-distancing measures.
All the royals, veterans and political leaders attending the ceremony stayed two metres away from one another.
The ceremony was also closed to the public who, in observance of the current lockdown measures, have been asked to remain at home and commemorate the fallen by watching the service on TV.
Prime Minister Boris Johnson rallied spirit ahead of the service, urging Britons to come together despite the distance created by coronavirus.
He said: “We come together every November to commemorate the servicemen and women from Britain and the Commonwealth who sacrificed their lives for our freedom.
“In this time of adversity, no virus can stop us from honouring their memory, particularly when we have just celebrated the 75th anniversary of victory in the Second World War.
“And in times of trial, our tributes matter even more.
“So let’s come together once again and remember those to whom we owe so much.”
Among the other members of the Royal Family attending today’s ceremony at the Cenotaph there were Prince William who also laid a wreath at the Cenotaph, his wife Kate, the Princess Royal, the Duke of Kent and Prince Edward.
The Queen last led the country on a Remembrance Sunday service in 2016.
On the following year, the monarch decided to stand by her husband Prince Philip on the balcony of the Foreign and Commonwealth Office, letting the Prince of Wales carry out the honour of laying the wreath of poppies.
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