The Queen has been one of the many people to celebrate her birthday in lockdown during the coronavirus pandemic, but her family made sure that her big day was made special. The Duke and Duchess of Sussex, who are currently living in Los Angeles, video called the monarch on Tuesday to wish her many happy returns, their spokesperson confirmed. The couple were joined by their baby son Archie Harrison, who turns one next month. The Queen has been participating in many video calls from isolation in Windsor Castle over the past few weeks and is thought to have spoken to the rest of her family on her birthday throughout the day.
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Prince Harry, Meghan Markle and baby Archie video called the Queen on her birthday
The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge also made a fuss of the Queen on her big day, taking to social media to share a sweet photo of the trio together, which had been taken at the Chelsea Flower Show in 2019. Alongside the picture, which was shared on the Kensington Royal Instagram account, was the caption: "Wishing Her Majesty The Queen a very happy 94th birthday today!" along with a birthday cake and balloon emoji. Prince Charles, meanwhile, sent a touching message to his mum on the official Clarence House Instagram account. The future King paid a loving tribute to the monarch, sharing a series of photos of the pair together, ranging from Charles as a baby, to a recent snapshot showing them laughing together at the Braemar Games. The accompanying caption read: "Wishing Her Majesty The Queen a very Happy 94th Birthday."
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The Queen spent her birthday at Windsor Castle
The monarch is currently residing at Windsor Castle with her 98-year-old husband, Prince Philip, along with a reduced household for their protection. She made the decision to cancel her annual birthday celebration for the first time in her 68-year reign in the wake of the crisis, and instead of the usual gun salute and "special measures" to honour the monarch, she instead celebrated privately. "We will not be marking Her Majesty's birthday in any special way," a palace source said. "Any calls, video calls etc with family will be private and kept so. There will be a social media post as per normal." The palace source added: "There will be no gun salutes – Her Majesty was keen that no special measures were put in place to allow gun salutes as she did not feel it appropriate in the current circumstances. We believe that this may be the first time in her reign."
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Usually, a 21-gun salute is fired by the King's Troop Royal Horse Artillery from either Hyde Park or Green Park, followed by a 62-gun salute at the Tower of London by the Honourable Artillery Company. However, the Queen decided the celebratory display of military firepower would not be "appropriate" at this time. The bells of Westminster Abbey - the church where the monarch was married and crowned - also stayed silent on her birthday for the first time in more than a decade.
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