Queen in rare public praise to future Queen consorts Kate and Camilla in Christmas speech

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The Queen’s speech was heavily focused on her beloved husband Prince Philip, who died in April aged 99. But, while recalling the Duke of Edinburgh’s interest in the environment and conservation, Her Majesty also heaped praise on Prince Charles and Prince William for carrying on her husband’s legacy.

And, in a rare move, she acknowledged the “admirable support” offered them by their wives Kate and Camilla.

Referring to Philip, the Queen said: “He was also an early champion of taking seriously our stewardship of the environment, and I am proud beyond words that his pioneering work has been taken on and magnified by our eldest son Charles and his eldest son William – admirably supported by Camilla and Catherine – most recently at the COP climate change summit in Glasgow.”

The sovereign had already praised William and Charles for their years-long efforts focused on the protection of the environment in her address to world leaders gathered at COP26 in November.

However, at the time she did not pay tribute to their partners, who were also in attendance at the summit in Glasgow and continuously support their work.

queen christmas speech praise kate middleton camilla duchess of cornwall news

The Queen praised Camilla and Kate in her Christmas broadcast (Image: GETTY)

queen christmas speech praise kate middleton camilla duchess of cornwall news

Kate and Prince William during the Together at Christmas service (Image: GETTY)

In her COP26 video message, recorded in lieu of her absence at the summit due to health reasons, the Queen said: “It is a source of great pride to me that the leading role my husband played in encouraging people to protect our fragile planet, lives on through the work of our eldest son Charles and his eldest son William. I could not be more proud of them.

“Indeed, I have drawn great comfort and inspiration from the relentless enthusiasm of people of all ages – especially the young – in calling for everyone to play their part.”

The Queen’s speech was recorded earlier this month and broadcast on Christmas Day.

The Christmas speech, which is penned every year by the sovereign, was filled with references to the late Duke of Edinburgh.

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queen christmas speech praise kate middleton camilla duchess of cornwall news

Prince Charles and Camilla arriving at St George’s Chapel on Christmas Day (Image: GETTY)

In her address to the country and the Commonwealth, the Queen empathised with families grieving the loss of a loved one.

She said: “Although it’s a time of great happiness and good cheer for many, Christmas can be hard for those who have lost loved ones.

“This year, especially, I understand why.

“But for me, in the months since the death of my beloved Philip, I have drawn great comfort from the warmth and affection of the many tributes to his life and work – from around the country, the Commonwealth and the world.

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The Queen delivering her COP26 address in November (Image: GETTY)

queen christmas speech praise kate middleton camilla duchess of cornwall news

The Queen and Prince Philip marking their 60th wedding anniversary (Image: GETTY)

“His sense of service, intellectual curiosity and capacity to squeeze fun out of any situation – were all irrepressible.

“That mischievous, enquiring twinkle was as bright at the end as when I first set eyes on him.

“But life, of course, consists of final partings as well as first meetings – and as much as I and my family miss him, I know he would want us to enjoy Christmas.

“We felt his presence as we, like millions around the world, readied ourselves for Christmas.”

queen christmas speech praise kate middleton camilla duchess of cornwall news

The royals’ family tree (Image: EXPRESS)

The Queen didn’t praise Philip only for his work on conservation.

The sovereign also mentioned his successful Duke of Edinburgh’s Award, a youth programme he launched in 1956 that has since expanded to 144 countries.

The Queen marked her first Christmas as a widow in the company of Prince Charles and Camilla, as announced by Clarence House earlier this week.

The Prince of Wales and the Duchess of Cornwall were photographed on Saturday morning arriving at St George’s Chapel, on the grounds of Windsor Castle, to attend the Christmas Day service.

queen christmas speech praise kate middleton camilla duchess of cornwall news

Sophie, Countess of Wessex, attended Christmas Day service at St George’s Chapel (Image: GETTY)

They were joined by Sophie, Countess of Wessex, Prince Edward and their two children Louis and James.

The Queen’s cousins the Duke and Duchess of Gloucester were also in attendance.

Their presence at the Windsor chapel leads to believe these seven royals may have also paid a visit to the sovereign at her Berkshire residence.

Kate and William have decided to spend the holidays with their children at their home in Norfolk, where they were joined by members of the Middleton family.



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