The Queen stays away: Her Majesty remains indoors at Windsor Castle #dailymail β€οΈπŸ’Ÿβ€οΈ

The Queen has missed out this morning on a service at Windsor Castle as she remained indoors while royals including Charles and Camilla, Edward and Sophie arrived at St George’s Chapel.

The Prince of Wales and the Duchess of Cornwall, the Earl and Countess of Wessex and the Duke and Duchess of Gloucester met the Dean of Windsor outside the chapel ahead of the Christmas Matins service.

Sophie and Edward were accompanied by their daughter Lady Louise and son James, Viscount Severn. It is understood the Queen’s absence from the service is a personal choice and follows a precautionary approach seen over the last six months.

The service, which is ticketed, is attended by residents of the Windsor estate and members of the chapel congregation.

The monarch is expected to be joined at Windsor Castle by Charles and Camilla, having shelved her customary trip to Sandringham as a ‘precautionary’ measure amid rising coronavirus cases.

The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge will not be joining the Queen for Christmas this year, instead spending the festive season in Norfolk, where they will host members of the Middleton family.

Prince William and Kate jointly penned a tweet, which they signed off ‘W&C’ to indicate they had written it themselves, and posted it on Christmas morning.

They said they recognised today is ‘different to what so many of us had planned’ following a spike in Covid cases in recent weeks, forcing people to isolate away from their families.

It read: ‘This Christmas will be different to what so many of us had planned. From those who are alone or having to isolate away from loved ones, to the incredible people supporting our NHS and caring for those most in need – we are thinking of you. W & C.’

Photographs showed the Duke and Duchess accompanied by their children, George, eight, Charlotte, six, and Louis, three, as they left the Christmas Day morning church service at St Mary Magdalene Church in Sandringham this morning.

The Prince of Wales and the Duchess of Cornwall, the Earl and Countess of Wessex and the Duke and Duchess of Gloucester have arrived for the Christmas Matins service in Windsor Castle

Prince William and Kate leaving the Christmas Day morning church service at St Mary Magdalene Church in Sandringham, Norfolk. They were joined by their children Prince George, Princess Charlotte and Prince Louis

Prince William and Kate leaving the Christmas Day morning church service at St Mary Magdalene Church in Sandringham, Norfolk. They were joined by their children Prince George, Princess Charlotte and Prince Louis

The royal couple will not be joining the Queen for Christmas this year, instead spending the festive season in Norfolk, where they will host members of the Middleton family. Pictured, leaving the Christmas Day church service at St Mary Magdalene Church in Sandringham

The royal couple will not be joining the Queen for Christmas this year, instead spending the festive season in Norfolk, where they will host members of the Middleton family. Pictured, leaving the Christmas Day church service at St Mary Magdalene Church in Sandringham

Sophie and Edward were accompanied by their daughter Lady Louise and son James, Viscount Severn. The royals were greeted at the entrance by the Dean of Windsor before moving inside for the morning service

Sophie and Edward were accompanied by their daughter Lady Louise and son James, Viscount Severn. The royals were greeted at the entrance by the Dean of Windsor before moving inside for the morning service

It is understood the Queen's absence from the service is a personal choice and follows a precautionary approach seen over the last six months

It is understood the Queen’s absence from the service is a personal choice and follows a precautionary approach seen over the last six months

The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge will be spending the festive season in Norfolk, where they will be joined by some members of the Middleton family.

They will also be joined by their three children, George, eight, Charlotte, six, and Louis, three. It is believed they will all spend the holiday season at Anmer Hall, in William and Kate’s home on the Sandringham estate.

It is not known which members of Kate’s family will be staying with them.

The Cambridges have not celebrated Christmas with the Middletons since 2016, when William, Kate, George and Charlotte visited a church in Bucklebury.

The Duke and Duchess of Gloucester arrive to attend the Christmas Day morning church service at St George's Chapel

The Duke and Duchess of Gloucester arrive to attend the Christmas Day morning church service at St George’s Chapel

The Duke and Duchess of Gloucester are met by the Dean of Windsor (centre) as they arrive to attend the Christmas Day morning church service

The Duke and Duchess of Gloucester are met by the Dean of Windsor (centre) as they arrive to attend the Christmas Day morning church service

Duke and Duchess of Gloucester arrive to attend the Christmas Day morning church service at St George's Chapel

Duke and Duchess of Gloucester arrive to attend the Christmas Day morning church service at St George’s Chapel

The Duchess of Cornwall held an umbrella to shield herself from the rain

Camilla looked in good spirits as she arrived for the service

The Prince of Wales and Duchess of Cornwall arrived at St George’s Chapel in Windsor Castle Saturday morning

The Duchess of Cornwall donned a blue chequered coat and a white umbrella as she arrive for the Christmas service

The Duchess of Cornwall donned a blue chequered coat and a white umbrella as she arrive for the Christmas service

Camilla took out a colourful mask before entering the chapel for the Christmas Day service on Saturday

Camilla took out a colourful mask before entering the chapel for the Christmas Day service on Saturday

The Earl and Countess of Wessex are also expected to be with the Queen for Christmas alongside their children, James, Viscount Severn, and Lady Louise

The Earl and Countess of Wessex are also expected to be with the Queen for Christmas alongside their children, James, Viscount Severn, and Lady Louise

Tom Walker performed For Those Who Can't Be Here alongside the Duchess of Cambridge in an event broadcast last night

Tom Walker performed For Those Who Can’t Be Here alongside the Duchess of Cambridge in an event broadcast last night

Prince Charles and the Duchess of Cornwall stand next to the stunning Christmas tree at Clarence House for a photograph posted on their official Instagram account last Friday

Prince Charles and the Duchess of Cornwall stand next to the stunning Christmas tree at Clarence House for a photograph posted on their official Instagram account last Friday

The Queen with Prince Charles and the Duchess of Cornwll in Braemar in September 2019

The Queen with Prince Charles and the Duchess of Cornwll in Braemar in September 2019

Princess Anne and Sir Timothy Laurence, pictured at Harry and Meghan's wedding at Windsor in 2018. Both will not be with the Queen on Christmas Day after Sir Timothy contracted Covid

Princess Anne and Sir Timothy Laurence, pictured at Harry and Meghan’s wedding at Windsor in 2018. Both will not be with the Queen on Christmas Day after Sir Timothy contracted Covid

Who is expected to join the Queen for lunch on Christmas Day now?

  • Prince Charles
  • Camilla, Duchess of Cornwall
  • Prince Andrew, Duke of York
  • Sarah, Duchess of York
  • Princess Beatrice
  • Princess Eugenie
  • Prince Edward, Earl of Wessex
  • Sophie, Countess of Wessex
  • James, Viscount Severn
  • Lady Louise Windsor

Although they will not be with the Queen on Christmas Day, William and Kate will see her over the Christmas period, reports the Mirror.

It comes as the Queen is facing her first Christmas without her late husband Prince Philip in more than 73 years, following his death in April of this year.

Prince Harry and Meghan Markle are also remaining stateside for the holidays, meaning the Queen will not yet meet her new granddaughter Lilibet.

The Queen will be joined on Christmas Day by Prince Charles and Camilla at Windsor Castle, in a boost for the monarch after Princess Anne had to drop out.

They are likely to be joined by Prince Andrew and his former wife, Sarah, Duchess of York, plus their two daughters, Princess Beatrice and Princess Eugenie.

The Earl and Countess of Wessex are also expected to be there, with their children, James, Viscount Severn, and Lady Louise – but Anne will not be attending.

Clarence House confirmed yesterday that the Prince of Wales and Duchess of Cornwall would join the 95-year-old monarch at Windsor.

The plans of Charles and Camilla had been unclear until yesterday – and they spent last Christmas at Highgrove, their country estate in Gloucestershire.

But a Clarence House spokesman confirmed: ‘The Prince of Wales and The Duchess of Cornwall will be with Her Majesty The Queen on Christmas Day.’

It comes after the Queen received a festive blow when her son-in-law Sir Timothy Laurence contracted Covid, meaning neither he nor Anne could join her.

2019 -- The Queen leaves St Mary Magdalene's Church after a service on December 25, 2019

2019 — The Queen leaves St Mary Magdalene’s Church after a service on December 25, 2019

2018 -- The Queen arrives at St Mary Magdalene's Church in Norfolk on Christmas Day in 2018

2018 — The Queen arrives at St Mary Magdalene’s Church in Norfolk on Christmas Day in 2018

2017 -- The Queen leaves St Mary Magdalene's Church after the Christmas Day service in 2017

2017 — The Queen leaves St Mary Magdalene’s Church after the Christmas Day service in 2017

A senior royal source confirmed last night: ‘Admiral Sir Tim has tested positive for Covid and is following all the appropriate rules. Christmas Day at Windsor will not be possible.’

Sir Tim is understood to have tested positive early this week, meaning that under the new seven-day rule he and the princess could travel to see the Queen after the weekend.

She usually hosts around 20 to 30 family members at her Norfolk home, with crowds of wellwishers turning out to watch the royals walk to the Christmas Day service at the church on the estate.

Sources told the Mail that the Queen, who normally stays in Norfolk until early February, could yet travel there in January.

The Queen had already decided to cancel her pre-Christmas dinner at Windsor for her extended family this week as a result of rising coronavirus cases.

And on Monday it was revealed that she had also decided to scrap plans to travel to her beloved Sandringham country estate in Norfolk for Christmas.

Sources indicated that the Queen felt it was ‘too difficult’ for her family and staff to move between residences safely bearing in mind pleas from the Government for the public to be cautious.

One said: ‘Her Majesty always leads by example.’

Instead she plans to spend her Christmas quietly at Windsor, her first without husband Philip.

The Queen stays away: Her Majesty remains indoors at Windsor Castle

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