In honor of the Queen, the royal family came together with numerous guests from politics and society in London’s St. Paul’s Cathedral for a solemn service. Queen Elizabeth II herself had canceled participation for health reasons after her performances on Thursday.
The 96-year-old Queen felt “some discomfort” during the celebrations and will “with great reluctance” miss the ceremony at St Paul’s Cathedral, Buckingham Palace said on Thursday evening. The Queen has had “mobility issues” of late and uses a cane on her rare public appearances.
She was represented by her son Prince Charles (73), who arrived at the cathedral in festive clothes with his wife Camilla. Large parts of the royal family were already waiting there – for the first time in two years, Prince Harry and Duchess Meghan, who had traveled from the United States for the 70th anniversary of the Queen’s throne.
Harry and Meghan were greeted with much cheering. Harry wore his military insignia to the event at London’s St Paul’s Cathedral, while Meghan appeared in a cream coat and hat.
Unlike the day before, the extended circle of the Royal Family was also invited to the thanksgiving service – as were Prime Minister Boris Johnson, several members of his government, many other politicians and guests from other areas of society and the Commonwealth of States.
Johnson was booed upon arrival. The shouts of onlookers could be heard clearly as the prime minister walked up the steps of the cathedral with his wife Carrie Johnson on Friday morning. This was in stark contrast to the jubilation witnessed by Head of State Queen Elizabeth II at her public appearances on Thursday. Johnson is under immense domestic political pressure because of the “Partygate” scandal surrounding lockdown parties in Downing Street.
In honor of the Queen, the largest bell in the country called “Great Paul” rang on Friday – for the first time for a royal occasion. Built in 1882, the bell was silent for decades because a mechanism broke. In 2021 it was restored.
Even if the pandemic in Great Britain is considered to be over, there were cancellations of the service due to the corona virus: both the second eldest son of Queen Prince Andrew and the Archbishop of Canterbury, who was supposed to hold the service, apologized for infections. Masks were not worn in the church with hundreds of guests.
The palace emphasized that the monarch had enjoyed the celebrations very much so far. When she appeared on the balcony at Buckingham Palace on Thursday, the monarch looked happy and carefree. She greeted the crowd and talked to her great-grandson Louis, who attracted attention with his grimaces.