Queen giving 'responsibilities of monarchy' to Charles says Bond
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Prince Charles, 73, is increasingly having to step up to support his mother, who turns 96 next week, ahead of his future role as king. The Queen’s eldest son represented the monarch at Thursday’s Maundy Service, at St George’s Chapel in Windsor Castle.
This was the first time the Queen has missed the traditional coin-giving ceremony in 52 years.
She will also not be attending the Easter Sunday service at Windsor Castle this weekend.
The Queen has been forced to cancel several engagements in recent months due to her health and mobility issues.
A rare letter from the Queen to her midwife following the birth of her fourth child, Prince Edward, highlights the Queen’s gratefulness for good health.
She details a 16-year old Charles’s health situation at the time.
Written from Eastbourne, East Sussex, the letter to her midwife “Rowie”, Helen Rowe, reads: “I am terribly sorry we never got in touch with you before you left London.
“Mabel was ill in bed when you wrote, and I confess I misread your letter in a great hurry and remembered the wrong day you put down, and when I was away at Arundel last week, I suddenly was reminded of your letter and of course it was too late by then!
“The baby is wonderful — good as gold, trying to sit up and weighing 15 lbs.12!
“He smiles and giggles at everyone, and makes everyone happy! Charles, I’m thankful to say, is better but very frail as yet.
“I hope we see you when we return in October.”
At the time of Edward’s birth in 1964, Charles was suffering from pneumonia.
He fell ill during a camping trip with other boys from Gordonstoun School on the royal estate at Balmoral and was taken to a private hospital in Aberdeen for treatment.
The letter is written on Buckingham Palace stationery and signed “Elizabeth R”.
Rowe, who has been named “Britain’s most famous midwife”, was present for the births of all four of the Queen’s children.
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Charles tested positive for COVID-19 for a second time in February and was “deeply disappointed” to have to cancel scheduled events to isolate.
The heir to the throne previously contracted the virus in March 2020 and spent seven days in self-isolation at his Birkhall home in Scotland.
At the time he said he “got away with it quite lightly” suffering from a mild form of the virus with a loss of his sense of taste and smell.
The Queen tested positive for COVID-19 a few days after Charles in February 2022.
Buckingham Palace described her to be suffering from “mild cold-like symptoms” but she continued with her duties.
The monarch discussed her experience of COVID-19 with a former patient whose brother and father died from the virus.
She revealed during the virtual visit to Royal London hospital last week that she was left “very tired and exhausted” from the virus.
Royal biographer Robert Hardman told GB news last month that “mobility is something of an issue now” for the monarch.
But he added: “I’m told by those very close to her that she’s in very good spirits, you know – absolutely pin-sharp as ever.”
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