Time to ‘prepare for the worst’ says BBC Royal Correspondent as Royal Family rush to Queen’s side
The Royal Family have gathered around the Queen at Balmoral after doctors became concerned for her health today.
The Royal correspondent for the BBC, whose official role is to announce the Queen’s death, said it was “time to prepare for the worst”.
BBC One afternoon schedule has moved to BBC Two, and Huw Edwards is presenting in a black tie.
The Prince of Wales and the Duchess of Cornwall have travelled to Balmoral, as has the Duke of Cambridge, Clarence House and Kensington Palace said.
Princess Anne, who was already there, Prince Andrew and Prince Edward, are also at her side.
The Duke and Duchess of Sussex were due to attend the WellChild Awards ceremony in London on Thursday evening, but have changed their plans to travel to see the Queen.
“The Duke and Duchess of Sussex will be travelling to Scotland”, a spokesperson for the couple said.
The Duchess of Cambridge has remained in Windsor as Prince George, Princess Charlotte and Prince Louis are on their first full day at their new school, Kensington Palace said.
A Palace spokesperson 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.”
There was speculation about the Queen’s health after the Prime Minister and Leader of the Opposition were seen being briefed in the House of Commons.
The head of state pulled out of a virtual Privy Council on Wednesday after doctors ordered her to rest.
The First Minister Mark Drakeford said: “Concerned to hear the news from Buckingham Palace. I send my best wishes to Her Majesty and her family on behalf of the people of Wales.”
He added that news about the Queen’s deteriorating health will have prompted “an afternoon of sober reflection and anxiety for households across Wales”.
At a press conference held in Cardiff in response to the Prime Minister’s energy plan announcement, Mr Drakeford said: “I should begin by just reflecting on the news published through Buckingham Palace earlier today – an afternoon of sober reflection and anxiety for households across Wales.
“Of course, we will be wishing all sympathy and understanding with members of the royal family who are gathering at Balmoral.”
Welsh Conservative leader Andrew RT Davies said: “Throughout her life, Her Majesty the Queen has served us all with commitment, diligence and dedication. Sending her my very best wishes. I know she will be in all our thoughts and prayers.”
Prime Minister Liz Truss said “the whole country will be deeply concerned by the news from Buckingham Palace this lunchtime” adding “my thoughts – and the thoughts of people across our United Kingdom – are with Her Majesty The Queen and her family at this time”.
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.”
UK Labour leader Keir Starmer said: “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.”
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.”
Holyrood’s Presiding Officer has said the thoughts of all in the Scottish Parliament are with the Queen after Buckingham Palace said she was under medical supervision at Balmoral.
Speaking after First Minister’s Questions, Alison Johnstone made a brief statement to MSPs.
“I am aware that a statement has been made at Westminster on the health of Her Majesty the Queen,” she said.
“I will, of course, monitor developments and keep members updated over the course of the day.
“But my, I’m sure the thoughts of all in Parliament are with Her Majesty at this time.”
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.”
The Archbishop of Canterbury has said the “prayers of the nation” are with the Queen.
“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.”
Former Conservative prime minister David Cameron said he was “deeply concerned” by the news about the Queen’s health.
“Deeply concerned by the news this afternoon from Buckingham Palace,” he tweeted.
“I send my heartfelt thoughts and prayers to Her Majesty The Queen and the Royal Family at this worrying time.”
Former Labour prime minister Sir Tony Blair said he is “deeply concerned” by the news about the Queen’s health.
“It is deeply concerning to hear today’s news from Buckingham Palace,” Sir Tony said in a statement posted to Twitter.
“My thoughts and prayers are with Her Majesty the Queen and her family at this worrying time.”
Health minister Lord Kamall said the thoughts of all those in the House of Lords are with the Queen and royal family after the news about concerns over her health.
He said in the upper chamber: “I’m sure that all noble lords will be concerned by the news from Buckingham Palace about concerns over the health of Her Majesty.
“I’m sure that the thoughts of all noble lords are with Her Majesty and her family at this time.”
Business Secretary Jacob Rees-Mogg said “it is a matter of the gravest concern to all of us when our sovereign is unwell”.
Mr Rees-Mogg was speaking for the first time in the House of Commons since his appointment to the role, and as he began his closing speech in the debate on energy costs.
He said: “Can I begin by adding my voice to those of honourable and right honourable members about Her Majesty the Queen and wish her well from this House.
“It is a matter of the gravest concern to all of us when our sovereign is unwell. “
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”.
More to follow…
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Isn’t she lucky to have a personal physician and the best medical help available while thousands of pensioners suffering similar heath issues in their twilight years, my mother included, are facing this winter fuel poverty, long wait for hospital treatment, difficulty in seeing a GP, have no access to an NHS dentist etc… Sorry but I care about them rather than a privileged woman who in her entire life has been pampered to the extreme. 😐
The health of E2R may not be of much concern to you. The support services available to her may irritate the hell out of you. However taking them away would not improve our lot one iota. We need to remember that. Griping about the privileges of one very old woman does nothing for any cause as there are thousands like her who can tap into private medical facilities dotted up and down this country. Far better if you got off your backend and started actively pursuing an agenda for change. Or are you nailed into that seat in front of… Read more »
You are right she isn’t my prority. My Ill mother is, as are the tens of thousands suffering fuel poverty worrying whether to eat food or spend their money heating their homes this winter. The Queen’s never have that worry or lifted a finger in her entire charmed life having had all her bills paid for by the state. And yes I’m aware the Queen’s health is failing, but there are thousands in a similar position to her. Do you care about them? I do. But at least the Queen has hundreds of servants to hand, her family at her… Read more »
I speak/write as a republican when I express my views here and elsewhere. So for you to use nonsense like …”get off your knees if I were you and direct your empathy towards ones more deserving rather than doff your cap to the monarch.” shows that your ability to absorb and respond to that which others say is inhibited by your own emotive response. Think again about the wider issue and, as said earlier, start actively pursuing an agenda for change.
I congratulate you all in advance for what will become, over the next few days, possibly the most vile and hateful place on the internet.
Fill your boots and show the world what you all stand for.
Then scour the Telegraph to find an article saying that Abergavenny is England to get all offended over.
Well NGJ we seem to have flushed out a number who prefer to direct their bile at an old woman who may be about to die rather than the system that permits differentiated treatment by privatisation and status.
Bile? It seemed like a reasonable comment on how absurd and unfair it is to be so concerned about one old woman (your words).
She may be gone soon, the system that permits differentiated treatment lives on. I rest my case.
Same old same emotive rhetoric. Look, the Queen has had an unbelievable priveraged life you & I paid for. On a human level anyone who passes, if this Is the case, is sad. But remember the ones forgotten that didn’t have an open chequebook.. Numerous estates maintained by our taxation. Army of forelock tuggers that catered to their every whim. The cult of monarchy.
What, that I show empathy towards ones less privileged that the Queen? That’s where you & I part ways. I care.
Caring about people doesn’t need to be a zero-sum game. A 96 year old woman who has offered comfort to lots of people is, most likely, in her last days; being part of royalty has allowed access to best treatment available and privilege many will never know; and this winter is going to be one of serious concern for many millions due to both political choices made in Westminster and global affairs.
Even if you don’t care about Queen Elizabeth II, your arguments aren’t going to go very far unless you can acknowledge what she does mean.
You might be brainwashed but I’m not. And the Queen hasn’t access to the best treatment? So naive.
And the generation who lived through the war are that way towards the Queen because they were from a era where the class system meant you showed blind deference towards establishment figures & monarchy.
I am a republican, so care not for the cult of monarchy. But on a human level wish no Ill towards a 96 year old woman with failing health. I just want my hard earned taxes spent on ones more deserving. Don’t you?
“time to prepare for the worst”.
I doubt if that sentiment is endorsed by a certain Charles Windsor
O, dwi ddim yn gwybod. Mae c***u ar fin taro’r ffan.
Mwy na thebyg mae e “bod ar fin” dwi’n meddwl!!