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The Queen changes plans to carry out important weekly royal duty

The 93-year-old monarch is following government advice

Danielle Stacey

The royal family have been adapting their diaries and the way they work, in light of the coronavirus pandemic. The Queen usually has a weekly audience with UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson in person, but on Wednesday, the pair had their meeting via telephone instead, according to the court circular.

The 93-year-old monarch isn't the only royal finding different ways to carry out her duties; her youngest son, the Earl of Wessex, participated in a video conference meeting on Monday.

READ: Buckingham Palace releases update on the Queen following coronavirus pandemic

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The Queen held a private audience at Buckingham Palace on Wednesday, where she met Commodore Steven Moorhouse (outgoing Commanding Officer, HMS QUEEN ELIZABETH) and Captain Angus Essenhigh (incoming Commanding Officer). There were no handshakes – only bows from the officers during the meeting. Audiences are brief, one-on-one meetings which happen regularly throughout the Queen's working week.

As a result of coronavirus, the monarch will start her Easter break a week earlier than usual. The Queen will travel to Windsor Castle on Thursday 19 March and in a statement, Buckingham Palace said she is likely to stay there beyond the Easter period.

MORE: Prince George and Princess Charlotte to be home-schooled as Thomas's Battersea closes

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The Queen with Boris Johnson in August 2019

A number of major royal events have already been cancelled this summer, due to the COVID-19 pandemic. These include the royal garden parties at Buckingham Palace, the Maundy Service at St George's Chapel, Windsor, and the Japanese state visit, that was due to take place this spring.

In a statement, the palace said: "After consultation with Her Majesty's Government and the Government of Japan, Her Majesty The Queen has agreed that, in the current circumstances, the planned State Visit to the United Kingdom in Spring 2020 by Their Majesties the Emperor and Empress of Japan should be postponed. The State Visit will be rescheduled at a later date."

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