Queen's historic coronavirus speech prompts outpouring of praise for monarch

·4 min read

The Queen’s speech, in which she urged the nation to “remain united and resolute” in the face of the coronavirus outbreak, has been greeted by praise.

In her historic televised address to the nation, which warned that Britain has more hardship to ensure as a consequence of the pandemic, the monarch thanked NHS workers and other key workers.

Her words, filmed at Windsor Castle and broadcast on Sunday night, prompted an outpouring of praise.

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Following the speech, the Archbishop of Canterbury tweeted: “ We all echo The Queen’s praise for our wonderful health, emergency, retail and logistics workers. As we were reminded by Her Majesty’s moving words, we will get through this together by staying at home, protecting the vulnerable and putting others’ needs first.”

Health Secretary Matt Hancock, who earlier urged the “small minority” of people breaking social distancing rules to change their behaviour, described the Queen’s message as “striking and important, adding: “Such strength to draw on - a vital reminder that we will succeed and better days will return.”

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Newly-elected Labour leader Keir Starmer tweeted a quote from the speech in which referred to “the pride in who we are”, adding: “The Queen speaks for the whole country and our determination to defeat the coronavirus.”

Brexit Party leader Nigel Farage also joined in the praise, saying: “No other living person could have delivered this message of hope beyond adversity with such passion and integrity. God save the Queen.”

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Earlier on Sunday, US President Donald Trump had shared a news story about The Queen’s forthcoming speech with the words: “A great & wonderful woman!”

Following the monarch’s speech, which was reportedly filmed by a lone cameraman wearing full personal protective equipment (PPE), Good Morning Britain presenter Piers Morgan described the speech as The Queen’s “finest moment as our Monarch”.

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The broadcast featured footage of NHS frontline staff, workers making deliveries and military personnel helping to construct the NHS Nightingale Hospital at the ExCel centre in east London.

People taking part in the Clap for Carers tribute were also shown, along with rainbow pictures drawn by children – in honour of the carers – and a black and white image of the Queen’s first radio broadcast.

NHS Nightingale London, the 4,000-bed field hospital set up at ExCel London also tweeted a thanks to The Queen for her speech.

The account shared picture of staff watching the speech, writing: “Thank you to Her Majesty the Queen for recognising the hard work of our frontline key workers in tonight’s #QueensSpeech. Here’s our staff listening inside Nightingale. We will defeat this. #StayHomeSaveLives”

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Royal expert Joe Little, managing editor of Majesty magazine, said The Queen’s address was a “calming message at a time of crisis”.

He described the rare address as history repeating itself, with the Queen delivering the message from Windsor Castle, just as she did 80 years ago as a young princess in a radio broadcast during the Second World War.

The royal commentator said: “Some might question the validity of such a thing in the 21st century, but clearly she is still seen by many as a matriarch, both here and in the other countries of which she is Queen.

“So people look to her at times such as this.

“Although she has witnessed so many catastrophes throughout her 68-year reign, she’s never come across anything quite like this before.”

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