Update, April 6th, 2020, 1:51 p.m. ET: For only the fourth time in her reign, Queen Elizabeth II gave an unscheduled televised address. On April 5th, the queen spoke to the United Kingdom (and everyone watching from home) about finding unity as we fight the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.
“I’m speaking to you at what I know is an increasingly challenging time,” she said to open her address from Windsor Castle, “a time of disruption in the life of our country, a disruption that has brought grief to some, financial difficulties to many, and enormous changes to the daily lives of us all.”
She first thanked NHS frontline workers, as well as all care workers and those fulfilling essential roles
“I’m sure the nation will join me in assuring you that what you do is appreciated, and every hour of your hard work brings us closer to a return to more normal times,” she said. And the queen also thanked everyone at home abiding by quarantine and social distancing rules.
Queen Elizabeth II noted how the pandemic evokes memories of World War II and of her first-ever address in 1940.
“We as children spoke from here at Windsor to children who had been evacuated from their homes and sent away for their own safety,” she said. “Today, once again, many will feel a painful sense of separation from their loved ones, but now as then, we know deep down that it is the right thing to do.”
Her message was one of unity and of strength. She assured everyone that “we will meet again.”
“Together we are tackling this disease, and I want to reassure you that if we remain united and resolute, then we will overcome it,” she said.
Watch her entire historic speech above.
Original post, March 24th, 2020: Queen Elizabeth II sticks to a fairly meticulous schedule when it comes to all of her appearances, but now it sounds like she might veer off track in the face of a global emergency. As reported by U.K. publication The Times, the queen will give a televised speech about the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic. A date has not yet been set, and the queen herself has not yet confirmed the speech.
According to a follow-up report by People, a “royal source” said that the Queen will follow the “advice of the government as to when [the speech] might best be deployed.”
In light of the pandemic, Queen Elizabeth II has moved from London to Windsor Castle with her husband, Prince Phillip. She will reportedly coordinate the speech with her aides via a video chat service to maintain social distancing.
The coronavirus speech would be only the fourth time Queen Elizabeth II gave an unscheduled speech to the public in her 68-year reign.
As reported by The Times, the other three “special addresses” were her 1991 comments about the Gulf War, her 1997 speech in light of Princess Diana’s death, and her 2002 speech after her mother’s death.
As for her scheduled speeches, the Queen gives several per year at the events she attends and addresses the public each year with her televised Christmas speech. Basically, people know what to expect when it comes to the 93-year-old monarch.
The Queen has already released a statement about COVID-19.
On March 19th, she commented on her move to Windsor, thanked scientists and healthcare and emergency workers, and reminded the nation that each person has a role to play when it comes to keeping everyone else safe.
“Many of us will need to find new ways of staying in touch with each other and making sure that loved ones are safe,” she wrote. “I am certain we are up to that challenge. You can be assured that my family and I stand ready to play our part.”
And apparently the Queen’s been using Skype and FaceTime, so times are changing for all of us.
As information about the coronavirus pandemic rapidly changes, HelloGiggles is committed to providing accurate and helpful coverage to our readers. As such, some of the information in this story may have changed after publication. For the latest on COVID-19, we encourage you to use online resources from CDC, WHO, and local public health departments, and visit our coronavirus hub.