Buckingham Palace says 'no cause for alarm' over Queen's health after all staff called for 'unusual' meeting

 

Queen Elizabeth outside Windsor castle last month (Richard Pohle/The Times/PA)

There is no cause for alarm about the welfare of Queen Elizabeth or her husband, Prince Philip, sources have said after a meeting was called at Buckingham Palace sparking widespread rumours across social media.

Senior staff from royal residences around the country have been summoned to London today for a meeting at 10am.

Sources from inside the Palace have stated there was no cause for alarm in an attempt to quell rumours circulating on social media about the welfare of Queen Elizabeth or her husband, Prince Philip.

The Daily Mail newspaper had reported senior aides from across the country had been called to Buckingham Palace for an apparently “unusual” meeting.

The meeting will be held by the Lord Chamberlain, the most senior officer of the Royal Household, and Sir Christopher Geidt, the Queen’s Private Secretary, and while it is unusual, they are certainly not without precedent and are thought to take place about once a year.

“There’s no cause for alarm,” the source, who spoke on condition of anonymity, told Reuters news agency, adding that said such all-staff meetings did occur occasionally.

Dickie Arbiter, a former royal correspondent for the BBC, said the meeting could be for nothing more than to announce refurbishment plans.


He wrote: “Staff meetings are called from time to time nothing unusual & could well be about the Buckingham Palace refurbishment.

“The Lord Chamberlain, as head of the Royal Household, has called a staff meeting as he has done in previous years.”

in November, it was announced that the Queen was going to get a pay rise to fund a £369m refurbishment of the Palace amid warnings of a “catastrophic building failure”.

The reports have, inevitably, sparked a gathering of the world’s media outside Buckingham Palace, as this video shared by a producer at the Huffington Post neatly illustrates.

Many have also noted that the flag at the Palace is flying at full mast, signifying there hasn’t been a major death.

Prince Philip was also out and about yesterday, pictured opening a new stand at Lord’s cricket ground.

The Duke of Edinburgh (left) is shown a number of bats by Mike Gatting (right), during a visit to Lord’s cricket ground

NBC News has also reported that the Queen will continue her appointments as normal.


The frenzied speculation on social media was given added impetus as many pointed out that the apparent meeting was not being covered by the BBC or Sky, leading many to suggest a media blackout was in force among the major broadcasters.

Both have since covered the news, also reporting that there is no apparent cause for alarm.

The Queen, who celebrated her 91st birthday last month, and Philip, who turns 96 next month, still regularly carry out official duties although they have cut back on their workload in recent years.

Elizabeth met Prime Minister Theresa May on Wednesday to formally agree to the dissolution of parliament ahead of June’s election while Philip opened a new stand at Lord’s Cricket Ground in central London.

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