In yet another blow to this year’s Royal family Christmas, Princess Anne has been forced to self-isolate after her husband Sir Timothy Laurence tested positive for Covid-19.
The Queen’s daughter will now be forced to miss Her Majesty’s small-scale Christmas celebrations, their first without Prince Phillip, and will reportedly quarantine at the Gatcombe Park estate in Gloucestershire. Anne may also miss her grandson Lucas Tindall’s first Christmas.
The latest news comes as the Queen cancelled her favourite royal family tradition amid concerns about the alarmingly high number of cases with the Omicron variant.
Rather than travelling to her beloved Sandringham in Norfolk, the Queen will stay in Windsor, where she will be joined by other members of the Royal household.
This is the second year the pandemic has led to the scrapping of the Queen’s traditional Christmas trip to Sandringham, where the family have celebrated Christmas since 1988 – and where our Monarch had hoped to spend her first year without Prince Philip, who died in April, at the age of 99.
The news of the 95-year-old monarch’s change of plans comes after Her Majesty was compelled to cancel the annual Christmas lunch. First moving it from Buckingham Palace to Windsor, then calling it off entirely as a safety precaution against the latest more infectious variant.
The decision to postpone the events come as Covid-19 cases soar across the UK with a record number of cases being recorded daily, driven by the Omicron variant.
In a recent press conference, England’s chief medical officer Professor Chris Whitty cautioned the public about attending gatherings and warned records “will be broken a lot over the next few weeks” regarding Covid-19 case numbers.
“I think what most people are doing – and I think this seems very sensible – is prioritising the social interactions that mean a lot to them and, to prioritise those ones, de-prioritising ones that mean much less to them,” he said.