Queen to address nation over coronavirus outbreak

The Queen is to speak to the nation about the coronavirus outbreak. Picture: MATTHEW USHER

The Queen is to speak to the nation about the coronavirus outbreak. Picture: MATTHEW USHER

The Queen is to give a televised address to the nation over the coronavirus outbreak - only the fourth time she has spoken to the country during a crisis in her 68-year reign.

Buckingham Palace said in a statement: “Her Majesty The Queen has recorded a special broadcast to the United Kingdom and the Commonwealth in relation to the coronavirus outbreak.

“The televised address will be broadcast at 8pm on Sunday, April 5.

“The address was recorded at Windsor Castle.”

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There had been a growing expectation the monarch would make a statement following the nationwide lockdown imposed by prime minister Boris Johnson earlier this month.

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It is thought Her Majesty is likely to praise the efforts of health workers during her address, as well as all those who have been helping in the fight against Covid-19.

It is also hoped she will offer reassurance to the nation.

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While she broadcasts a recorded message each year on Christmas Day, special addresses from the monarch in troubled periods are rare.

There have been three previous speeches broadcast - after the Queen Mother’s death in 2002, ahead of Diana, Princess of Wales’s funeral in 1997 and about the First Gulf War in 1991.

The Prince of Wales offered his own message of hope to the country earlier this week when he recorded a video after coming out of isolation following a positive test for Covid-19.

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Charles said: “As a nation, we are faced by a profoundly challenging situation, which we are only too aware threatens the livelihoods, businesses and welfare of millions of our fellow citizens.

“None of us can say when this will end, but end it will. Until it does, let us all try and live with hope and, with faith in ourselves and each other, look forward to better times to come.”

Buckingham Palace announced in March that in consultation with the Medical Household and Government, a number of public events with large numbers of people due to have been attended by the Queen and other members of the royal family in the coming months would be cancelled or postponed.

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