Health

Prince Harry travels to Queen’s side without Meghan Markle


Prince Harry is headed to Balmoral alone without his wife Meghan amid reports of his grandmother The Queen’s worsening health.

The Duke and Duchess of Sussex had been due to attend the Wellchild Awards in London this evening but it is confirmed they have cancelled their appearance. The prince was expected to make a speech at tonight’s awards, which honours the brave deeds of seriously ill children. 

It is understood Meghan will remain in London, but will not attend the WellChild awards. The duchess could potentially join Harry in Scotland at a later date, the source said, following the change of plan.

The heir to the throne Prince Charles, seen carrying a briefcase, took a royal helicopter to Balmoral from Dumfries House with his wife this morning. Princess Anne was already at Balmoral after an engagement this week.  

A flight carrying seven members of the Royal household – including Prince William, Prince Andrew, Prince Edward and the Countess of Wessex – flew from RAF Northolt in London and landed at Aberdeen at 4pm.

The Duke of Cambridge took to the wheel of his Range Rover with his uncles and aunt on board amid deep concerns about Her Majesty’s health.

Prince Harry is travelling to Balmoral alone while Meghan Markle stays behind in London (Pictured: The Duke and Duchess of Sussex leave City Hall in Dusseldorf yesterday)

Prince Harry is travelling to Balmoral alone while Meghan Markle stays behind in London (Pictured: The Duke and Duchess of Sussex leave City Hall in Dusseldorf yesterday)

Prince Harry is travelling to Balmoral alone while Meghan Markle stays behind in London (Pictured: The Duke and Duchess of Sussex leave City Hall in Dusseldorf yesterday)

Prince William drives Prince Andrew, Prince Edward and Sophie, Countess of Wessex to Balmoral Castle, amid concerns over Britain's Queen Elizabeth's health

Prince William drives Prince Andrew, Prince Edward and Sophie, Countess of Wessex to Balmoral Castle, amid concerns over Britain's Queen Elizabeth's health

Prince William drives Prince Andrew, Prince Edward and Sophie, Countess of Wessex to Balmoral Castle, amid concerns over Britain’s Queen Elizabeth’s health

Prince Charles boards a helicopter from Dumfries House to Balmoral this morning as the Queen's children gather at her bedside after a warning from doctors about her health

Prince Charles boards a helicopter from Dumfries House to Balmoral this morning as the Queen's children gather at her bedside after a warning from doctors about her health

Prince Charles boards a helicopter from Dumfries House to Balmoral this morning as the Queen’s children gather at her bedside after a warning from doctors about her health

Queen Elizabeth II with the Duke and Duchess of Sussex at the Queen's Young Leaders Awards Ceremony in 2018

Queen Elizabeth II with the Duke and Duchess of Sussex at the Queen's Young Leaders Awards Ceremony in 2018

Queen Elizabeth II with the Duke and Duchess of Sussex at the Queen’s Young Leaders Awards Ceremony in 2018

The Queen met new Prime Minister Liz Truss on Tuesday for an audience at Balmoral

The Queen met new Prime Minister Liz Truss on Tuesday for an audience at Balmoral

The Queen met new Prime Minister Liz Truss on Tuesday for an audience at Balmoral

Media continue to gather outside the gates of Balmoral in Scotland, where the Queen is under medical supervision with the royal family rushing to her side

Media continue to gather outside the gates of Balmoral in Scotland, where the Queen is under medical supervision with the royal family rushing to her side

Media continue to gather outside the gates of Balmoral in Scotland, where the Queen is under medical supervision with the royal family rushing to her side

The plane carrying the Queen's children and grandchildren land in Aberdeen - the nearest airport to Balmoral

The plane carrying the Queen's children and grandchildren land in Aberdeen - the nearest airport to Balmoral

The plane carrying the Queen’s children and grandchildren land in Aberdeen – the nearest airport to Balmoral

Harry and Meghan had not been expected to see any other members of the Royal Family during their visit from California this week. ITV News reported the couple are coordinating plans with other members of the Royal Family amid tensions since they quit as frontline royals – but are ‘travelling separately’.

The last time the Sussexes saw The Queen was in June amid the celebrations for the Platinum Jubilee, when they introduced her to their daughter Lilibet – named in honour of Her Majesty’s childhood nickname – for the first time.

The Duchess of Cambridge is at Windsor with her three children.

A royal spokesman said: ‘Following further evaluation this morning, The Queen’s doctors are concerned for Her Majesty’s health and have recommended she remain under medical supervision. The Queen remains comfortable and at Balmoral.’

Royal biographer Nigel Cawthorne said: ‘It leads us to believe the situation is much more serious than we’ve been told’.

Any statement about the Queen’s health is deemed to be rare and suggests the situation is serious. It is also significant that all of her immediate family are with her or en route. 

Worried Britons have already gathered outside the gates of Balmoral to pray for Her Majesty and pay their respects. 

In London, around 100 people braved torrential rain to stand at the gates of Buckingham Palace as fears grow for the Queen’s health.

Members of the Royal Family and their aides board a RAF jet for Aberdeen to get to the Queen's side amid concerns for her health

Members of the Royal Family and their aides board a RAF jet for Aberdeen to get to the Queen's side amid concerns for her health

Members of the Royal Family and their aides board a RAF jet for Aberdeen to get to the Queen’s side amid concerns for her health

Catherine, Duchess Of Cambridge, leaves Windsor Castle as she stayed behind in England with her three children

Catherine, Duchess Of Cambridge, leaves Windsor Castle as she stayed behind in England with her three children

Catherine, Duchess Of Cambridge, leaves Windsor Castle as she stayed behind in England with her three children 

A Royal flight taking family members including Prince Harry and Prince Andrew to Balmoral takes off from RAF Northolt in London this afternoon

A Royal flight taking family members including Prince Harry and Prince Andrew to Balmoral takes off from RAF Northolt in London this afternoon

A Royal flight taking family members including Prince Harry and Prince Andrew to Balmoral takes off from RAF Northolt in London this afternoon

Prince Charles pictured at a roundtable with attendees of the Natasha Allergy Research Foundation yesterday. Today Charles is at Balmoral

Prince Charles pictured at a roundtable with attendees of the Natasha Allergy Research Foundation yesterday. Today Charles is at Balmoral

Prince Charles pictured at a roundtable with attendees of the Natasha Allergy Research Foundation yesterday. Today Charles is at Balmoral

Crowds start to gather at the gates of Buckingham Palace earlier today as fears grow for The Queen's health

Crowds start to gather at the gates of Buckingham Palace earlier today as fears grow for The Queen's health

Crowds start to gather at the gates of Buckingham Palace earlier today as fears grow for The Queen’s health

People are still standing at the gates of Buckingham Palace through torrential rain as the nation awaits updates about The Queen's condition

People are still standing at the gates of Buckingham Palace through torrential rain as the nation awaits updates about The Queen's condition

People are still standing at the gates of Buckingham Palace through torrential rain as the nation awaits updates about The Queen’s condition

PM: ‘The whole country will be deeply concerned about Her Majesty’

Prime Minister Liz Truss said: ‘The whole country will be deeply concerned by the news from Buckingham Palace this lunchtime.

‘My thoughts – and the thoughts of people across our United Kingdom – are with Her Majesty The Queen and her family at this time.’

Britons were forced to face up to the reality that her reign was in her twilight years, when her husband of 73 years, Prince Philip, died in April 2021, just weeks shy of his 100th birthday.

‘She is just part of our lives… She’s been the queen for all our lives really. She’s so calm and measured,’ said Maureen Barnett, 66, outside Buckingham Palace as news filtered through.

‘I’ve been concerned since yesterday when I heard she couldn’t do the Privy Council meeting,’ added Elizabeth Jackson, also 66.

‘I was hoping the Scottish air might do her good. The issues have accelerated this year. It is quite worrying.’

Minutes before the statement, the new Prime Minister Liz Truss was handed a note in the Commons informing her of the development as she was revealing her plans to cap energy bills for the next two years.

The Prime Minister, who was sworn in by The Queen at Balmoral on Tuesday, tweeted: ‘The whole country will be deeply concerned by the news from Buckingham Palace this lunchtime. 

‘My thoughts – and the thoughts of people across our United Kingdom – are with Her Majesty The Queen and her family at this time.’

Labour leader Keir Starmer posted: ‘Along with the rest of the country, I am deeply worried by the news from Buckingham Palace this afternoon. My thoughts are with Her Majesty The Queen and her family at this time, and I join everyone across the United Kingdom in hoping for her recovery.’

US President Joe Biden told the Prime Minister that he and his wife Jill are thinking of the Queen amid deep concerns over her health, the White House said.

Biden is receiving regular updates on the queen’s situation and raised the issue in a conference call on Ukraine with allied leaders, White House national security spokesman John Kirby said during a press conference.

‘His and the first lady’s thoughts are solidly and squarely with the queen today, and her family,’ said Kirby.

‘The president has been briefed this morning and will be updated throughout the day concerning news out of the United Kingdom.

EU chief Ursula von der Leyen hailed Britain’s The Queen as a symbol of Europe’s shared history and offered ‘thoughts and prayers’ for the monarch.

‘My thoughts and my prayers are with her. And she represents the whole history of the Europe that is our common home, with our British friends,’ von der Leyen told a news conference in Rotterdam.

‘She has given to all of us in all these years – always – stability, confidence. She has shown an immense amount of courage. She is a legend in my eyes.’

 

Yesterday, the Queen was forced to postpone a Privy Council meeting at the last minute on doctors’ advice.  Following a busy day on Tuesday, during which she greeted both Boris Johnson and Liz Truss at Balmoral, as well as undertaking other light duties, the 96-year-old monarch has been told to rest.

And today Buckingham Palace revealed that doctors have been brought to Balmoral after concerns this morning

The Queen waits in the Drawing Room before receiving Liz Truss for an audience at Balmoral, Scotland on Tuesday. Today she is under the supervision of doctors amid concerns about her health

A statement about the Queen's health is exceptionally rare and raises major concerns

A statement about the Queen's health is exceptionally rare and raises major concerns

A statement about the Queen’s health is exceptionally rare and raises major concerns 

A sign noting the cancellation of today's guard changing ceremony at Buckingham Palace

A sign noting the cancellation of today's guard changing ceremony at Buckingham Palace

A sign noting the cancellation of today’s guard changing ceremony at Buckingham Palace

People gather outside Balmoral Castle following the statement from Buckingham Palace

People gather outside Balmoral Castle following the statement from Buckingham Palace

People gather outside Balmoral Castle following the statement from Buckingham Palace

Prince William, pictured with his wife and children on their first day at Lambrook School yesterday, is also heading to Scotland

Prince William, pictured with his wife and children on their first day at Lambrook School yesterday, is also heading to Scotland

Prince William, pictured with his wife and children on their first day at Lambrook School yesterday, is also heading to Scotland

The Archbishop of Canterbury has said the ‘prayers of the nation’ are with the Queen, the head of the Church of England. ‘My prayers, and the prayers of people across the (Church of England) and the nation, are with Her Majesty The Queen today,’ Justin Welby tweeted.

‘May God’s presence strengthen and comfort Her Majesty, her family, and those who are caring for her at Balmoral.’

She had been due to hold the Privy Council virtually yesterday evening, during which the new Prime Minister would have taken her oath as First Lord of the Treasury and Cabinet ministers would have been sworn into their roles and made privy counsellors, if not already appointed as one in the past.

There had been a flurry of activity in the Commons this lunchtime as concerns about the Queen were raised to the Prime Minister. Nadhim Zahawi had handed her a note, which she read and put in

Speaker Sir Lindsay Hoyle interrupted the speech of SNP Westminster leader Ian Blackford during the energy debate to tell MPs: ‘I know I speak on behalf of the entire House when I say that we send our best wishes to Her Majesty the Queen and that she and the royal family are in our thoughts and prayers at this moment.’ He added: ‘If there is anything else, we will update the House accordingly.’ 

The royal family’s website appeared to crash following the news of the Queen’s health concerns. An error message appeared on screen reading: ‘Gateway time-out’. 

SNP Westminster Leader Ian Blackford said he was ‘saddened’ to hear the announcement made about the Queen’s health.

Speaker Sir Lindsay Hoyle interrupted Mr Blackford’s speech in the energy debate to say the House sends its best wishes to the Queen.

Resuming his speech, Mr Blackford told the Commons: ‘I’m sure on behalf of all colleagues that we’re saddened to hear the announcement that has been made, and the thoughts and prayers of all of us will be with Her Majesty the Queen and indeed with the royal family.’

Prince Charles and Queen Elizabeth II view the the Reddendo Parade for the Queen's Body Guard for Scotland in the gardens Holyrood house, Edinburgh, on June 30

Prince Charles and Queen Elizabeth II view the the Reddendo Parade for the Queen's Body Guard for Scotland in the gardens Holyrood house, Edinburgh, on June 30

Prince Charles and Queen Elizabeth II view the the Reddendo Parade for the Queen’s Body Guard for Scotland in the gardens Holyrood house, Edinburgh, on June 30

A police officer stands guard outside Balmoral Castle, amid concerns over Queen Elizabeth IIs health

A police officer stands guard outside Balmoral Castle, amid concerns over Queen Elizabeth IIs health

A police officer stands guard outside Balmoral Castle, amid concerns over Queen Elizabeth IIs health

The Queen (pictured) has recently been receiving 'unusual' daily morning visits from the Prince of Wales

The Queen (pictured) has recently been receiving 'unusual' daily morning visits from the Prince of Wales

The Queen (pictured) has recently been receiving ‘unusual’ daily morning visits from the Prince of Wales

Royal experts say unplanned visits between Prince Charles (pictured) and his mother are uncustomary, and they are usually arranged by household staff

Royal experts say unplanned visits between Prince Charles (pictured) and his mother are uncustomary, and they are usually arranged by household staff

Royal experts say unplanned visits between Prince Charles (pictured) and his mother are uncustomary, and they are usually arranged by household staff

The Queen has remained at Balmoral since July 21, when she travelled to her highlands estate for her summer break

The Queen has remained at Balmoral since July 21, when she travelled to her highlands estate for her summer break

The Queen has remained at Balmoral since July 21, when she travelled to her highlands estate for her summer break

How the Queen’s health has suffered since the death of Prince Philip 

The Queen holds a walking stick as she attends the Royal Company of Archers Reddendo Parade in the gardens of the Palace of Holyroodhouse in June

The Queen holds a walking stick as she attends the Royal Company of Archers Reddendo Parade in the gardens of the Palace of Holyroodhouse in June

The Queen holds a walking stick as she attends the Royal Company of Archers Reddendo Parade in the gardens of the Palace of Holyroodhouse in June

The Queen’s health has been scrutinised over the past year, with the monarch having to pull out of key events due to ongoing mobility issues.

She thrilled crowds on the first day of her Platinum Jubilee celebrations on June 2 when she appeared on the Buckingham Palace balcony and later at Windsor Castle. 

But the next day she pulled out of the Platinum Jubilee Service of Thanksgiving at St Paul’s Cathedral after experiencing ‘discomfort’ during the previous day’s celebrations. The decision was considered regrettable, it is understood, but sensible due to the length of the journey and time involved and the physical demands the event would have required.

While she made a number of in-person visits in the weeks leading up to her Jubilee celebrations, including a surprise visit to open the Elizabeth line and to tour the Chelsea Flower Show using a golf buggy, the Queen has faced ongoing ‘episodic mobility problems’ stretching back to last autumn and now uses a walking stick.

In October 2021, she used a walking stick at a Westminster Abbey service – the first time she had done so at a major engagement. A week later, after a busy autumn programme, she was ordered to rest by her doctors and advised to cancel a trip to Northern Ireland.

The Queen was secretly admitted to hospital for ‘preliminary investigations’ and had her first overnight stay in hospital for eight years on October 20, 2021. The next day she was back at her desk at Windsor, carrying out light duties.

But concern for her health mounted when she pulled out of more high-profile engagements, including the Cop26 climate change summit and the Festival of Remembrance, with Buckingham Palace saying she had been advised to continue to rest and not carry out any official visits. She was intent on attending the Remembrance Sunday service at the Cenotaph, but missed this due to a sprained back.

For more than three months she carried out only light duties, including virtual and face-to-face audiences in the confines of Windsor Castle.

In February 2022, she celebrated her Platinum Jubilee, meeting charity workers at Sandringham House and cutting a Jubilee cake in what was her largest in-person public engagement since October.

Many of her duties are now carried out via video calls, and the country’s longest-reigning sovereign remarked during a in-person audience in February: ‘Well, as you can see, I can’t move.’

There were fears for her health when she caught Covid, testing positive on February 20, 2022. The triple-vaccinated Queen suffered from mild cold-like symptoms but said the virus left her ‘very tired and exhausted’. She carried on with light duties while self-isolating at Windsor but cancelled some virtual audiences.

She pulled out of the Commonwealth Day service at Westminster Abbey in March, a significant date in the royal calendar given the importance to her of the family of nations, and did not attend the Maundy Thursday service. But she rallied to honour the Duke of Edinburgh at a memorial service at the end of March, walking slowly and carefully with the aid of a stick, and holding on to the Duke of York’s elbow for support.

In May 2022, she missed the State Opening of Parliament for the first time in nearly 60 years, with Buckingham Palace attributing her absence to ‘episodic mobility problems’. The Prince of Wales and the Duke of Cambridge opened parliament on her behalf as Counsellors of State, with Charles reading the Queen’s Speech for a historic first time.

Scotland’s First Minister Nicola Sturgeon said: ‘All of us are feeling profoundly concerned at reports of Her Majesty’s health.

‘My thoughts and wishes are with the Queen and all of the royal family at this time.’

It comes after a string of health problems for the increasingly frail sovereign, who was advised not to travel to London from her Highland home this week to accept the resignation of her outgoing Prime Minister and appoint Miss Truss.

It was the first time in her 70-year reign that the Queen has appointed a Prime Minister at Balmoral.

The two politicians made the 1,000-mile round trip from London rather than making the Queen, who has suffered episodic mobility problems since October, travel back from Scotland.

Buckingham Palace said there were no constitutional issues with the delay to proceedings, which will be re-arranged, and that the decision to encourage Her Majesty to rest has not involved a hospital stay.

But the decision to postpone the virtual meeting will, inevitably, cause renewed concern for the Queen’s health.

A Palace spokesman said last night: ‘After a full day yesterday, Her Majesty has this afternoon accepted doctors’ advice to rest.

‘This means that the Privy Council meeting that had been due to take place this evening will be rearranged.’

The Duke and Duchess of Sussex were not thought to be visiting the Queen during their European tour this month. 

In Tuesday they were in Dusseldorf, Germany, to mark a year before the next Invictus Games, where they were greeted by rapturous crowds of royalist enthusiasts, while today’s schedule was intended to be focused on the Wellchild Awards. 

The duke has served as a patron of Wellchild since 2007.

The couple’s tour was the subject of mounting speculation about whether they would see other members of the Royal Family, in particular Harry’s father Prince Charles and brother Prince William.

A royal insider said the two brothers had seen each other just twice in 12 months.

Heir to the throne Charles was said to have been making regular morning visits to see his mother later in the summer as she continued to struggle with her mobility, with the unplanned visits considered highly unusual.

The Queen missed the annual Braemar Gathering highland games, which she usually attends, last weekend.

The gathering of the House of Windsor comes just three months after people across Britain paused over a long holiday weekend to celebrate the queen’s 70 years on the throne. While crowds of cheering, flag-waving fans filled the streets around Buckingham Palace throughout four days of festivities, the queen herself made only two brief appearances on the palace balcony to wave to her subjects.

Elizabeth II has increasingly handed over duties to Charles and other members of the royal family in recent months as she recovered from a bout of COVID-19, began using a cane and struggled to get around.

During her Platinum Jubilee celebrations, the Queen only travelled to Buckingham Palace twice, first for her Trooping the Colour balcony appearance and then for a finale after the pageant.

She secretly spent a night in hospital for tests in October and was ordered by doctors to rest for the next three months, missing the Remembrance Sunday Cenotaph service and Cop26 climate change talks.

The Queen caught Covid in February.

After experiencing mild cold-like symptoms, she said the virus left her ‘very tired and exhausted’.

The Queen is the only British monarch to have celebrated a Platinum Jubilee.

Her reign has stretched from the post-war years into a new millennium and a radically altered 21st century.

In her twilight era, she has been setting her affairs in order, using her Jubilee message to endorse her daughter-in-law, the Duchess of Cornwall, once a royal mistress, as a future queen to be crowned at the Prince of Wales’s side when he becomes king.

She also faced a run of royal troubles in her Jubilee year.

She stripped her son, the Duke of York, of his military roles, with Andrew giving up his HRH style before agreeing to pay millions to settle a civil sexual assault case.

Her beloved consort, the Duke of Edinburgh, to whom she was married for 73 years, died in April 2021.

Representatives of Harry and Meghan have been approached by MailOnline for comment, as has the Wellchild Awards.

The Queen also remained at home instead of attending the traditional Sunday church service at Balmoral on Sunday.

Prince Charles cut a lonely figure as he was spotted without Her Majesty at the weekly service at Crathie Kirk. The monarch was a regular attendee at the small church while staying at the royal estate in previous year.

Buckingham Palace has declined to give an ongoing commentary on the monarch’s health.

During her Platinum Jubilee celebrations, the Queen only travelled to Buckingham Palace twice, first for her Trooping the Colour balcony appearance and then for a finale after the pageant.

She spends most of her time at Windsor Castle, 22 miles from central London, living there during the pandemic and while major renovations take place at the Palace, and for her comfort.

She secretly spent a night in hospital in October undergoing tests and was then under doctors’ orders to rest for the next three months, missing the Remembrance Sunday Cenotaph service and Cop26 climate change talks.

The Queen caught Covid in February, and suffered from mild cold-like symptoms but said the virus left her ‘very tired and exhausted’.

Moment Nadhim Zahawi passed note to Liz Truss about the Queen’s health as she unveiled her energy plan to the Commons before Keir Starmer was also told by Angela Rayner 

This is the moment Nadhim Zahawi passed a note to Liz Truss about concerns over the Queen’s health in the House of Commons.

The Prime Minister had unveiled her energy plan to MPs just minutes before news that the monarch was under medical supervision broke.

Mr Zahawi, who was just this week appointed Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster – the portfolio of land, property and assets held by the Queen, was tasked with informing the premier and was seen briefing her on the front bench for several minutes before leaving the chamber.

Labour leader Sir Keir Starmer was also told of developments by his deputy Angela Rayner. 

Commons Speaker Sir Lindsay Hoyle told MPs: ‘I know I speak on behalf of the entire House when I say that we send our best wishes to Her Majesty the Queen and that she and the royal family are in our thoughts and prayers at this moment.’ 

Buckingham Palace made the announcement earlier this afternoon, as Prince Charles, Camilla and Prince William raced to Balmoral to be with her.

The Queen waits in the Drawing Room before receiving Liz Truss for an audience at Balmoral, Scotland on Tuesday. Today she is under the supervision of doctors amid concerns about her health

The Queen waits in the Drawing Room before receiving Liz Truss for an audience at Balmoral, Scotland on Tuesday. Today she is under the supervision of doctors amid concerns about her health

The Queen waits in the Drawing Room before receiving Liz Truss for an audience at Balmoral, Scotland on Tuesday. Today she is under the supervision of doctors amid concerns about her health

Mr Zahawi, who was just this week appointed Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster, the portfolio of land, property and assets held by the Queen, was tasked with informing the premier and was seen briefing her on the front bench for several minutes before leaving

Mr Zahawi, who was just this week appointed Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster, the portfolio of land, property and assets held by the Queen, was tasked with informing the premier and was seen briefing her on the front bench for several minutes before leaving

Mr Zahawi, who was just this week appointed Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster, the portfolio of land, property and assets held by the Queen, was tasked with informing the premier and was seen briefing her on the front bench for several minutes before leaving




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