Queen’s COP26 speech ‘had more resonance’ in absence amid health advice

Queen’s Christmas at Sandringham discussed by Russell Myers

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Her Majesty is continuing her rest and recuperation after doctors advised she should only take on light duties and not travel for two weeks. She was pictured enjoying an afternoon drive at her Sandringham Estate yesterday, where she had flown by helicopter on Thursday from Windsor Castle. Amid her determination to be fit for Remembrance Sunday, she spent the weekend on the Norfolk estate.

Insiders said the Queen is determined to host the Royal Family at Sandringham this Christmas after coronavirus restrictions forced most of the country to scrap their plans for last year’s festive season.

The monarch has pencilled in the Remembrance Sunday service at the Cenotaph on November 14 as something she simply cannot miss, according to Daily Mirror royal editor Russell Myers.

She had been due to attend the UN’s climate change conference in Glasgow, where she planned to deliver a speech and host a reception, but was forced to drop out of the event.

Prince Charles, Prince William and their wives Camilla and Kate represented the Royal Family in her absence.

However, Mr Myers claimed Her Majesty not physically being there actually had a much greater impact.

Pod Save the Queen is hosted by Zoe Forsey and Mr Myers, with new episodes released every Thursday.

Mr Myers said: “I was at COP26 on the Monday and Tuesday and sadly the Queen did have to pull out, under doctor’s orders, from the reception.

“However, I think the fact that she did deliver this message, it had more resonance because everyone was there.

“If the Queen had made a speech all the world leaders would have been there anyway, everyone gathered in a room would have their full attention on the Queen.

“But, there was something powerful about it. Everybody was looking up at the screen, listening intently to the words.”

The Queen told world leaders at the climate change summit that the “time for words has now moved to the time for action”.

She encouraged them to act swiftly “for our children and our children’s children” and to “rise above the politics of the moment”.

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Mr Myers felt the “imagery” of the Queen’s speech added a lot.

He explained: “She was wearing green — a green dress. Her brooch was apparently an engagement gift, which had a butterfly on it.

“And indeed the picture behind her was a picture ‒ and these things are always carefully chosen ‒ this was a picture of Prince Philip in Mexico in 1988.

“All the butterflies had been released into the wild and he was amongst them.”

The Queen recalled how the environment had been a subject very close to her late husband’s heart, and paid tribute to Charles and William for continuing to encourage people to protect the planet.

Mr Myers noted one particularly “poignant” moment in her speech.

She said: “Of course, the benefits of such actions will not be there to enjoy for all of us here today: none of us will live forever.

“But we are doing this not for ourselves, but for our children and our children’s children, and those who will follow in their footsteps.”

Mr Myers said he found this “particularly poignant”.

He added: “She has had her own health fears, she is 95, obviously there is talk about preparations for life without her here.

“All of those messages were really hammered home.”

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