The Queen, 95, has told her family she is feeling “far better” and is ready to host her traditional Christmas lunch at Sandringham – the first since Prince Philip died
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The Queen has told her family she is well enough to host Christmas at Sandringham after recovering from a back sprain.
The monarch, 95, assured them she is feeling “far better” and is “looking forward” to the traditional festive get together at her Norfolk estate.
Concern for the Queen’s health has been heightened in recent weeks after she pulled out of a number of major engagements.
Her Majesty has been resting under doctors’ orders at Windsor Castle after getting injured nearly two weeks ago and last month spending a night in hospital for an unconfirmed condition.
Christmas will have special significance this year, after losing her husband of 73 years, Prince Philip, in April.
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It is understood the Queen will travel to Sandringham on or around Friday, December 17.
Royal sources said it was likely she would make a 50-minute helicopter journey from Windsor, but insisted a traditional journey by train from London to Kings Lynn had not yet been ruled out.
Christmas guests will include Prince Charles and the Duchess of Cornwall and the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge and their three children.
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Her youngest son Prince Edward, his wife Sophie and their children, Louise and James have also confirmed their attendance.
Princess Anne and her children Peter Phillips and Zara Tindall are expected to attend.
And the invitation has been extended to Princesses Beatrice, her husband Edo Mapelli Mozzi and their newborn daughter Sienna, and to Princess Eugenie, her husband Jack Brooksbank and their baby son August.
Royal sources suggested scandal-hit Prince Andrew had “obviously” been invited, while Prince Harry and his wife Meghan were “highly unlikely” to fly over from California with their two children despite being invited.
The Queen spent last Christmas alone with the Duke of Edinburgh at Windsor Castle due to the coronavirus pandemic.
A source said: “The Queen has told everyone she is feeling far better of late and is very much looking forward to welcoming them for Christmas.
“Like many other families, this will be the first time Her Majesty can gather with her extended family after being kept apart for so long due to the coronavirus pandemic.”
Royal fans will be hoping to return to the estate on Christmas Day to catch a glimpse of the royals as they walk en masse to and from the St Mary Magdalene, a 16th-century church on the Sandringham property.
The Queen is said to be “determined” to attend church with the rest of the family, but will as in previous years be driven to the church to save her walking the short distance.
After a period away from public duties the Queen has this week maintained a steady diary from Windsor Castle.
Yesterday she carried out two virtual audiences via videolink, welcoming the High Commissioner for Nigeria, Sarafa Tunji Isola, and then the Ambassador of Malaysia, Zakri Jaafar.
Buckingham Palace said the Christmas plans were “a private affair”.