From personal cases to an unprecedented new way of working: These are the extraordinary ways the royals have been affected by COVID-19

Unprecedented times call for unprecedented measures.
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As the coronavirus pandemic of 2020 continues, some of the world’s oldest institutions have been turned on their head as carefully pre-planned calendar events and age-old traditions are put to the wayside.

Over the past few months, the world has seen a monumental change in daily life as self-isolation at home, social distancing, and the closure of non-essential businesses become part and parcel to our daily lives.

One of the most jarring aspects to consider is the fact that it affects people from all walks of life, as we’ve seen when it comes to members of the world’s most elite families.

To start with, personal encounters with the deadly virus are rife – and Prince Charles is case in point.

In a moment that sent shockwaves through the world, the Palace confirmed that Charles himself had tested positive to the virus in March.

Luckily, he suffered only mild symptoms, and was later given the all-clear to come out of self-isolation.

But he’s certainly not the only royal to have had a close encounter.

From Crown Princess Mary’s children to Prince Albert of Monaco’s brush with the illness – we take a look at exactly how COVID-19 is impacting members of the royal family across the world.

The British royal family

At age 93, Queen Elizabeth can’t take any risks when it comes to the killer virus, which is impacting the elderly community and those with pre-existing medical conditions the most.

So it didn’t come as a surprise when the Palace immediately began to take the situation seriously when the pandemic first started coming to light.

In a stark, yet practical move, royal watchers were intrigued to see the Queen suddenly don gloves during her regular investiture ceremonies.

As she awards recipients, the Queen usually shakes hands and pins the honours to their chests – but given the current circumstances, it wasn’t surprising to see the accessory make an appearance.

Soon after, the Palace confirmed the Queen would be moving to Windsor Castle to self-isolate alongside Prince Philip.

That’s not to say we haven’t seen and heard plenty from the Queen since – Buckingham Palace have been proactive in sharing updates about the Queen’s daily duties, including sharing a weekly phone call with British PM Boris Johnson as per her usual routine.

The Queen has adapted her working schedule as she self-isolates at Windsor Castle.


What’s more, the royals went one further and made modern royal history when the Queen delivered a wartime-esque address to the nation in early April.

In the poignant speech at Windsor Castle, which was filmed in a room with one other person who was wearing the appropriate health and safety protection gear, the Queen called for Britons to band together and unite in such difficult times.

“I want to reassure you that if we remain united and resolute, then we will overcome it. I hope in the years to come everyone will be able to take pride in how they responded to this challenge,” she said in the stirring address.

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As for Duchess Catherine and Prince William, the pair have made use of their social media platforms to continue to connect with their following, as well as show their support for people working on the frontline.

In March, the couple shared their experience in making surprise calls to NHS workers who had been working tireless to help those infected with the virus.

Later, they had a royal first in sharing a video call with school students whose parents were working in hospitals and as carers during the pandemic.

And in another touching gesture, William and Kate shared a video of their three young children clapping as part of the Clap for Carers initiative, which saw thousands of people across Britain cheer for those working on the frontline at 8pm.

Of course, the pair have seen a number of their pre-planned calendar events be cancelled, including Trooping the Colour, Royal Ascot and even Wimbledon, which is frequently attended by Catherine.

That said, it’s great to still see them at work in other unique ways – and even better to see how it brings a sense of positivisty and silver lining in such an unsettling time.

Watch their surprise video call to students in the player below. Story continues…

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Kate and Wills are keeping a low profile with their three young children as safety measures are enacted across the world.


The Danish royal family

In March, it was confirmed Crown Princess Mary and Crown Prince Frederik’s four young children would return back to Denmark despite their intentions to finish up the term studying abroad in Switzerland.

In a statement released by the Danish royal household, the family confirmed: “In light of the worsening situation in Denmark in connection with the handling of the spread of COVID-19, the Crown Prince couple has decided that the family will leave home from Switzerland.”

The Palace reiterated: “The Crown Prince couple find it most natural to return home and stand with the Danes in a time that requires a lot of everyone and where there is a shared responsibility for looking after each other”.

The Danish royal children, Prince Christian, 14, Princess Isabella, 12, and twins Prince Vincent and Princess Josephine, both nine have returned home amid the spread of Coronavirus in Europe.

(Instagram / @detdanskekongehus)

The Spanish royal family

Headed by Queen Letizia and King Felipe, the Spanish royal family are also taking extreme measures to ensure the safety of themselves, and others.

The couple underwent a test to see if they themselves had the virus – a necessary precaution after Letizia met with a minister who had tested positive.

It was later confirmed that the royal couple had tested negative for the virus.

The pair continue to stay isolated in the Spanish Palace as the country continues to rides out the harrowing affects of the virus’ spread – attempting to flatten the curve in the process.

Queen Letizia and King Felipe returned negative results to the Coronavirus.


The Monaco royal family

Shortly before Prince Charles’ diagnosis, it was revealed Prince Albert of Monaco had tested positive for coronavirus.

While the Prince appears to have made a full recovery, it was the first, jarring sign that the illness had made it’s way into Europe’s most prestigious circle.

It’s a relief to see the Prince back to full health – a feat celebrated by many including his daughter Jazmin Grace Grimaldi, who shared on her Instagram: “Bravo! Prayers have been answered and my Father has announced he is healed and healthy from the devastating Corona Virus! He is now free to go quarantine with family”.

The family have also seen the cancellation of a number of key engagements, including the annual Bal de la Rose charity event, which has run for a whopping 66 years.

The event was originally scheduled to take place on March 21, but will be moved to a later date this year, pending confirmation.

This marks only the second time is has been postponed, with a single similar occurrence in 1991, during the Gulf War.

The annual Bal de la Rose, also known as the Rose Ball, has been a staple in the Monacan royals (and indeed Princess Caroline’s) diaries for years, but it has been postponed for 2020 in light of the coronavirus pandemic.


The Swedish royal family

As the pandemic swept Europe, the Swedish royal family quickly took measures to protect its members, and others.

Several key engagements were cancelled, including an official dinner attended by King Carl Gustaf and Queen Silvia which was meant to take place on March 4.

It was also later revealed that Princess Estelle, aged eight, was forced to study from home when one of her fellow students tested positive for the virus.

They are now safely self-isolating together, and much like William and Catherine, Crown Princess Victoria and husband Daniel haven’t shied from sharing some of the interesting and unique ways they’re staying connected and working from home.

In March, they shared an update with their children on Instagram with a reminder to fans to wash their hands.

“In times of infection we are all encouraged to wash our hands with soap and water frequently,” they wrote.

The Netherlands royal family

Much like the Swedish royal family, the Dutch royal family in The Netherlands have also been forced to reschedule and cancel a number of upcoming engagements.

Led by Queen Maxima and King Willem-Alexander, the pair have seen a number of their pre-planned public appearances be suspended.

Events included the opening of a museum exhibition and an appearance at the National Teachers’ Day for Trade Education.

As per an official statement, the Amsterdam Palace has also been closed to the public.

The Netherlands’ royal family have also seen a number of events cancelled in the wake of the virus outbreak.


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