Queen misses Sunday church service ahead of Christmas plans

The Queen is taking strict precautions as Covid rates rise in the UK

Queen misses Sunday church service ahead of Christmas plans
(Image credit: Getty)

The Queen has missed her weekly church service ahead of her Christmas plans at Sandringham, in a last-ditch effort to reduce the risk of contracting COVID-19. 

Her Majesty was forced to skip her Sunday service at Windsor Castle yesterday amid rising rates of Omicron, raising further doubts over the likelihood of her traditional festivities going ahead. 

The Queen's Christmas 2021 plans currently entail a Royal Family reunion at Sandringham House, but it has yet to be confirmed if the celebrations can safely be held. It's understood that royal staff has been busy all weekend Covid-proofing the Norfolk residence for the 95-year-old monarch, who is expected to arrive on Wednesday. 

According to the Telegraph, "rigorous testing procedures in place" and medical tests will be administered to anyone entering Sandringham to minimize the risk of spreading COVID-19. 

Despite 'looking forward' to Christmas, the Queen is reportedly reluctant to host any activities that could endanger her relatives or staff. 

"There is a strong desire for it to be as normal as it can be but obviously this is subject to practical concerns," a source told the MailOnline. 

Queen at Windsor church 2017

The Queen has been forced to skip church amid rising Covid rates

(Image credit: Getty)

With COVID cases reaching a staggering 90,000 a day in Britain, it's no surprise that the Queen is taking precautions. 

The Head of State, whose husband Prince Philip died aged 99 in April, has suffered a string of health problems over the past couple of months—including a sprained back and even an overnight hospitalization. She has since been advised by doctors to rest at Windsor Castle, where is currently undertaking 'light duties' such as Red Box filing and virtual audiences. 

It's understood that the Queen will make a decision in the next 48 hours over whether or not she should proceed with her Sandringham shindig. 

The Royal Family has gathered at the plush 20,000-acre estate for Christmas since 1988, where they typically spend two days drinking, eating, and playing games. If the bash gets the go-ahead this year, it's expected to be attended by Prince Charles and Duchess Camilla, as well as the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge and their three children. It's also been speculated that the Duke of York and his daughters, Princesses Beatrice and Eugenie, will join, despite Prince Andrew's ongoing sex abuse scandal. 

Emma Dooney
Lifestyle News Writer

Hailing from the lovely city of Dublin, Emma mainly covers the Royal Family and the entertainment world, as well as the occasional health and wellness feature. Always up for a good conversation, she has a passion for interviewing everyone from A-list celebrities to the local GP - or just about anyone who will chat to her, really.

Emma holds an MA in International Journalism from City, University of London, and a BA in English Literature from Trinity College Dublin.