Queen’s mind is only with Philip and her duty as Meghan & Harry plan to expose ‘The Firm’
Prince Philip transferred back to King Edward VII Hospital
With Prince Philip recovering in hospital after heart surgery, the monarch paid the touching tribute in a BBC programme being screened at 5pm today ahead of tomorrow’s Day. It is being interpreted as a show of solidarity by senior members of the Royal Family, with Charles, Camilla, Kate, William and Sophie taking part. They will showcase their life of public service, in contrast to the life Prince Harry and Meghan have chosen for themselves in California.
Prince Philip is in hospital after a heart op (Image: Getty)
Late tonight, Harry and Meghan’s controversial interview with Oprah Winfrey will be shown in the US, before ITV airs it at 9pm tomorrow.
But the Queen appears to be brushing off any concerns about what her grandson and his wife may say by focusing on the Duke of Edinburgh.
Her chrysanthemum brooch, made from sapphires and diamonds set in platinum, was seen on their honeymoon at Broadlands, Hants, in 1947. The Queen wore it again to mark their 60th and 73rd wedding anniversaries in 2007 and last November.
This time she paired it with a delphinium blue dress and jacket of silk and wool cloque by Angela Kelly.
Her Majesty, 94, was filmed against a backdrop of Commonwealth flags in St George’s Hall at Windsor Castle for the BBC show called A Celebration For Commonwealth Day. It was recorded to replace the usual Commonwealth Day service at Westminster Abbey, which was cancelled because of Covid restrictions.
The annual service, the last royal engagement attended by Prince Harry and Meghan in March last year, is one of the most important in the royal calendar, emphasising the Queen’s commitment to the Commonwealth.
Queen on BBC show with a brooch she wore on their honeymoon (Image: Getty)
The association of 54 mainly former British Empire nations has a combined population of 2.4 billion, and the Queen, as its head, hopes it will be her lasting legacy.
She had given Harry and Meghan special responsibility to be her ambassadors, connecting and representing the 60 percent of Commonwealth inhabitants who are aged under 30.
This year the Queen’s address will be an audio recording that has been embargoed until the programme airs.
Prince Charles has recorded a message in Westminster Abbey, in which he addresses the universal devastation caused by Covid.
He will say: “The coronavirus pandemic has affected every country of the Commonwealth, cruelly robbing countless people of their lives and livelihoods, disrupting our societies and denying us the human connections which we so dearly cherish.
“Amidst such heartbreaking suffering, however, the extraordinary determination, courage and creativity with which people have responded has been an inspiration to us all. This pandemic has shown us the true nature of a global emergency.
“We’ve learned that human health, economic health and planetary health are fundamentally interconnected and that pandemics, climate change and biodiversity loss are existential threats which know no borders.”
The Queen and Philip study their wedding photographs in 1947 (Image: Getty)
Prince William and Kate are also filmed speaking to Dr Zolelwa Sifumba from Durban, South Africa.
Camilla, Duchess of Cornwall, is seen sitting in Poet’s Corner in the Abbey, talking to TV presenter Clare Balding about the importance of books and reading for children. Camilla says: “I started reading when I was very, very young with a father who was a fervent bibliophile. So from the age of two or three he used to sit and read to us children, take us on wonderful adventures all over the world.
“And I think I was bitten at that age and from then I have just kept going and I have got involved in a lot of literacy programmes and patronages. I just feel very strongly that all children should be taught to read.”
Sophie, the Countess of Wessex, will mark the fact that tomorrow is also International Women’s Day.
Later in the evening, more than half a billion viewers in 68 countries are expected to watch THE Duke and Duchess of Sussex’s inheir “tell-all” interview with Oprah.
Prince William and Kate appear in the Commonwealth Day show (Image: WalesOnline / Rob Browne)
America’s CBS network has been criticised for broadcasting the show while Prince Philip remains in hospital. It comes days after Buckingham Palace said it would investigate allegations that Meghan had bullied several staff.
Yesterday one of her closest friends, Canadian fashion designer Jessica Mulroney, sprang to her defence.
She posted on Instagram: “I don’t know that anyone has ever had to deal with the pressure, the politics and the press like this woman.
“In the face of it all, I have never seen her waver from kindness, empathy and love.”
Many US media outlets are also backing former Suits actress Meghan, 39, and Harry, 36, who were stripped of their remaining duties by the Queen last month.
Even rival network ABC backed the Duchess, with The View chat show co-host Meghan McCain declaring: “She’s such a target. There’s so much unnecessary and unwanted hate at her. I think it’s just a bunch of haters who are angry that a hot American actress landed their prince.”
However, New York Post columnist Jane Ridley wrote: “Meghan and Harry should quit whining instead of complaining to Oprah.
“They say they left the Royal Family because they had so much to offer the world, so much they could say. But apparently, all they have to talk about is themselves.”
A CBS spokesman confirmed global interest was “still peaking” in the prime-time special.
A senior production source confirmed: “This is going to be a gift that keeps on giving. As well as immediate broadcast deals, CBS will reap profits for years to come from clips that will air on news and entertainment shows as well as documentaries on the British Royal Family.”
Oprah, who was a wedding guest of the couple, is reportedly being paid up to £6.5million for the interview. Her spokesman said Harry and Meghan are not being paid, nor are they receiving a donation to a charity in lieu of appearance fees.
With Meghan And Harry: A CBS Primetime Special – soared last week when the network released a string of trailers teasing its explosive content.
Harry and Meghan had an explosive interview with Oprah (Image: Getty)
In one, Ms Winfrey opens with the words: “There is no subject that’s offlimits.” She then asks Meghan how she thinks Buckingham Palace will react to the interview.
The Duchess replies: “I don’t know how they could expect that, after all of this time, we would still just be silent if there is an active role that The Firm is playing in perpetuating falsehoods about us.”
In another clip, Harry claims his “biggest concern is history repeating itself” – referring to his late mother Princess Diana.
CBS has confirmed there will also be “adorable” scenes of the couple’s 21-month-old son at the family’s £11million Montecito mansion, while Meghan will talk about being pregnant with her second child.
It is not known whether the interview was recorded before or after Prince Philip went to hospital on February 16.
He is now recovering at King Edward VII’s Hospital in London after having treatment for a preexisting heart condition at St Bartholomew’s NHS Hospital nearby.
Buckingham Palace said: “His Royal Highness will remain in hospital for treatment, rest and recuperation for a number of days.”
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