Queen Elizabeth II to admit ‘bumpy’ year in Christmas speech

The pre-recorded message will be broadcast in Britain and the Commonwealth nations

Queen Elizabeth II plans to acknowledge that both Britain and her family have endured a difficult year by saying during her Christmas message that it has been a “bumpy” time.

The pre-recorded message will be broadcast in Britain and the Commonwealth nations on Christmas Day. It was recorded before the queen’s husband, Prince Philip, was hospitalized in London as a precautionary measure.

Excerpts released by Buckingham Palace before the speech show the queen admits difficulties during the course of the year.

Talking about the need for reconciliation and forgiveness, Elizabeth says: “The path, of course, is not always smooth, and may at times this year have felt quite bumpy, but small steps can make a world of difference.”

She is thought to be referring both to Britain’s tortuous path out of the European Union, which led to a lengthy political stalemate broken only earlier this month when voters gave the pro-Brexit Conservative Party a comfortable majority in Parliament, and to the royal family’s setbacks.

The problems facing the queen’s family this year included Prince Andrew’s retreat from public duties because of a disastrous TV interview in which he defended his friendship with convicted sex offender Jeffrey Epstein.

ALSO READ: Jeffrey Epstein dies by suicide in jail cell, officials say

The family has also endured a public rift between Prince William and Prince Harry, who has travelled with his wife Meghan and young son Archie to Canada rather than spend the Christmas holidays at Sandringham Estate — the queen’s rural retreat, as has long been customary for senior royals.

READ MORE: Prince Harry, Meghan and Archie in Canada for the holidays

Both Harry and Meghan have complained about constant scrutiny by the media as they settle into family life with 7-month-old Archie.

The health of 98-year-old Philip has been a constant concern. He has been hospitalized in London for several days, but may still be able to return to Sandringham in time for Christmas. Details about his condition haven’t been made public.

When Prince Charles was asked about Philip’s health during a visit to a flooded visit in South Yorkshire, Charles said Monday his father was, “Alright. When you get to that age things don’t work so well.”

Gregory Katz, The Associated Press


Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

UPDATED: Itska back in owner’s arms after Oak Bay man returns dog taken from Tofino

Shannon Boothman expects to be reunited with Itska on Sunday

Tofino and Ucluelet’s Top 10 sports and arts stories of 2019

Revisiting the Coast’s best sports and arts newsmakers of the past year.

Rent-It Centre takes over curbside collection contract in Tofino and Ucluelet

Rent It Centre’s bid was $25,865 lower than the only other bidder, SonBird Refuse and Recycling.

Tofino’s first cannabis dispensary opens

“I don’t know where it’s going, but happy how it’s gone so far.”

Dog reunited with Tofino owner, months after being taken from beach

Shannon Boothman ‘ecstatic’ at pet’s return after a tip leads to social media search

Site of planned Jumbo Valley ski resort to be protected, managed by First Nations

Development rights permanently retired for site of proposed year-round ski resort west of Invermere

Huawei exec’s extradition hearing begins in Canada

China’s foreign ministry complained the United States and Canada were violating Meng’s rights

Prince Harry: ‘Powerful media’ is why he’s stepping away

Prince Harry and Megan have stepped away from their royal commitments

How to beat Blue Monday, the most depressing day of the year

Multiple factors can play a role in seasonal depression, says Fraser Health psychiatrist

B.C. VIEWS: Few clouds on Horgan’s horizon

Horgan’s biggest challenge in the remainder of his term will be to keep the economy humming along

Victoria family focuses on ‘letting go, enjoying time together’ after dad gets dementia

Walter Strauss has developed an interest in music and now takes line dancing classes

B.C. forest industry grasps for hope amid seven-month strike, shutdowns, changes

Some experts say this could be worse for forestry than the 2008 financial crisis

Most Read