LONDON (Reuters) - At the end of a difficult year, Queen Elizabeth has posed for photographs with her son Prince Charles, grandson Prince William and great-grandson Prince George in an apparent message about the continuity of the British royal family.
Buckingham Palace released photographs on Saturday of the Queen and the three immediate members of the line of succession as they prepared traditional Christmas puddings.
Prince George, 6, is the focus of attention for his older relatives as he stirs pudding mixture in a bowl.
The palace said the four generations of royals represented a cross-section of people helped by a charity for serving and former members of the armed forces - the Royal British Legion - which the queen has supported since 1952.
The family scene struck a happy note for Queen Elizabeth, 93, after a difficult year.
Over the past 12 months, her husband Prince Philip got a police warning for his involvement in a car crash, grandsons Princes William and Harry publicly fell out and her second son Prince Andrew became more entangled in the furore over his links to disgraced U.S. financier Jeffrey Epstein.
On Friday, 98-year-old Philip was taken to hospital for treatment of an existing condition, Buckingham Palace said.
(Writing by William Schomberg; Editing by Ros Russell)