Queen Elizabeth cancels birthday tradition for first time in 68 years amid UK lockdown


The Queen won’t be holding any special occasion to mark her 94th birthday this year due to the Coronavirus pandemic.

A spokesman for Buckingham Palace today announced at the Queen’s request and for the first time during her 68-year reign, there will be no gun salutes in the royal parks this year.

The aide said: “Her Majesty was keen that no special measures were put in place to allow gun salutes as she did not feel it appropriate in the current circumstances.”

A social media post will mark the day on Tuesday, but any calls or video calls with family will be private.

The Department for Culture Media and Sport have written to government buildings giving the standard advice on flag flying protocol but included the following in their instructions: “In the current circumstances we are not expecting everyone to be able to follow this advice and you should continue to adhere to social distancing guidelines as set out by the Government.”

‘As has already been announced, there will be no Trooping in June and there are no plans currently for any alternative marking of her official birthday.’

The Queen praised the actions of millions of Brits saving lives by staying at home over Easter declaring “Coronavirus will not overcome us”.

In her first-ever Easter message, the Queen stressed the importance of maintaining the lockdown, saying ‘by keeping apart we keep others safe’.

With the outbreak making church services impossible, the Queen delivered what was believed to be her first Easter address, which had the resolute message: ‘We know that coronavirus will not overcome us.’

The Queen will mark her birthday privately in Windsor, where she has been with her 98-year-old husband Prince Philip since leaving Buckingham Palace on March 19.