Queen moves back to Windsor Castle leaving Philip behind after lockdown together
The Queen has returned to Windsor Castle after her stay at Sandringham, Buckingham Palace has confirmed.
The monarch arrived at the Berkshire royal residence on Tuesday, but the Duke of Edinburgh has remained in Norfolk.
Philip, 99, has spent much of his retirement so far at Wood Farm on the Sandringham estate.
But he joined the Queen at Windsor for lockdown from March onwards before they headed to Balmoral in Aberdeenshire for their summer break and then moved Sandringham for a few weeks.
Tuesday’s Court Circular – the daily list of royal engagements – published on Wednesday – cited Windsor Castle as the current residence of the royal court.
The royal couple were said to be as close they ever have been during lockdown.
The Duke of Edinburgh has apparently given the monarch the strength to continue in the face of a series of setbacks for The Firm, including Megxit.
They have also had the opportunity to relax in the ‘HMS Bubble’ and now want to avoid spending long stints apart from each other, it is claimed.
Both of them have reportedly remembered what a ‘good team’ they are together during the lockdown.
A royal source told the Sun : “Everyone who has seen her recently says the Queen appears to have a new lease of life because she loved the chance to spend quality time with Philip again.
“Obviously she has been gravely worried about the nation during the pandemic but those around her have seen how amazing they have been together.
“Because of self-isolation and with only a small team of loyal staff, dubbed ‘HMS Bubble’, this is the first time the Queen has been able to spend quality time with her husband for years.”
The insider added that the couple have been able to relax like normal people in their 90s.
Philip flew to Windsor Castle from the Sandringham estate in March.
The couple spent the summer in Balmoral, where they were visited by other members of the royal family, including the Cambridges and Princess Eugenie.
But a source said that Philip wanted to return to Sandringham, where he lived before the pandemic, but wasn’t able to due to staffing issues.
At Windsor, the couple have a team of dedicated staff who look after them while keeping with the government’s restrictions.
However, they don’t have enough staff to make two bubbles – so Phil was told he must go to Windsor with the Queen.
“But there is not enough staff to make two bubbles so he is being made to go.
“It makes far more sense to keep them together.”
It was confirmed last week that no “large-scale events” like investitures will be held at Buckingham Palace or Windsor Castle for the rest of the year.
Explaining the decision, Buckingham Palace said it had been taken in line with “current government guidelines, and as a sensible precaution in the current circumstances”.
The Queen still intends to use the palace for audiences and engagements but rising coronavirus cases and the “rule of six” restrictions on gatherings indoors appear to have prompted the move.
Investitures have not been held since the lockdown was announced in late March, although the Queen hosted a special open-air ceremony in July to knight veteran NHS fundraiser Captain Sir Tom Moore.
The glittering diplomatic reception attended by around 1,000 guests every autumn is expected to be cancelled but one-off events that were planned are likely to be staged in 2021, if Government guidelines allow.
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