Queen holds another series of virtual diplomatic audiences

PA

The Queen has held another series of virtual diplomatic audiences greeting ambassadors from her Windsor Castle home.

For the second week running senior diplomats attending Buckingham Palace presented their credentials to the monarch by video link.

The new arrangements, staged in line with medical advice, are likely to be the norm for a period.

The Queen received German ambassador Andreas Michaelis and the High Commissioner for Brunei Darussalam, First Admiral Pengiran Dato Seri Pahlawan Norazmi bin Pengiran Haji Muhammad, who were both joined by their wives.

Queen Elizabeth holds a virtual diplomatic audience with the High Commissioner for Brunei Darussalam and his wife. Yui Mok/PA Wire
Queen Elizabeth holds a virtual diplomatic audience with the High Commissioner for Brunei Darussalam and his wife. Yui Mok/PA Wire

The Queen and the Duke of Edinburgh spent much of the second lockdown at their Berkshire residence and will remain at Windsor for Christmas, forgoing the annual royal gathering at Sandringham.

A Buckingham Palace spokeswoman said after the first virtual diplomatic audiences were held last week: “A variety of options were considered in line with current guidelines to reintroduce diplomatic audiences while retaining some of the long-established ceremonial elements, such as the use of Buckingham Palace.

“At this time, in line with medical advice, Her Majesty will conduct diplomatic audiences virtually from Windsor Castle.”

Diplomatic audiences have remained almost unchanged since the Victorian era, with ambassadors still collected from their embassy or residence in a state landau, a ceremonial horse-drawn carriage, and taken to Buckingham Palace to present their credentials the Queen.