The Washington PostDemocracy Dies in Darkness

Queen Elizabeth II advised to rest for two weeks, undertake ‘light duties’

Britain's Queen Elizabeth II attends a service at Westminster Abbey in London on Oct. 12. (Frank Augstein/AP)
Placeholder while article actions load

GLASGOW — Queen Elizabeth II has been advised by doctors to rest for another two weeks, Buckingham Palace said Friday.

The 95-year-old monarch will continue to undertake “light, desk-based duties,” the palace said, including some virtual audiences.

But doctors have advised her to refrain from undertaking any official visits, more than a week after she spent the night at a London hospital for what the palace said were “preliminary investigations.” The stay prompted widespread speculation about her health.

It is highly unusual for the queen to miss events but in the past two weeks, she has canceled three.

Just prior to her hospital stay, the queen called off a trip to Northern Ireland. And earlier this week, she said that she would not attend the COP26 climate summit in Glasgow, Scotland, where she was set to be the star attraction at an evening reception with world leaders.

On Friday, the palace said that she will be unable to attend the Festival of Remembrance on Nov. 13, an annual event that pays tribute to the armed forces in Britain and the Commonwealth. It was the queen’s “firm intention,” however, to be present for the Remembrance Service on Nov. 14, the palace statement said.

Every year, the queen leads the nation in paying tribute to the country’s war dead at a gathering alongside politicians at the Cenotaph in central London. In recent years, the queen has delegated some royal responsibilities during that service to Prince Charles, who has laid a wreath of poppies at the Cenotaph with the monarch looking on.

On Thursday, the queen held a virtual meeting to present poet David Constantine with a medal. At one point, in a video released by the palace, she joked that she was working “mechanically.” She also asked Constantine where he planned to keep the award, to which he responded, “somewhere safe.”

"Well, it is a rather nice medal, isn’t it?” the queen said.

Read more:

Queen Elizabeth II resting with ‘light duties’ after discharge from hospital, Buckingham Palace says

Queen Elizabeth II expresses irritation at world leaders who won’t commit to COP climate summit

Queen Elizabeth II announces she will no longer attend COP26 summit in person