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Queen Elizabeth II on Sunday made a televised address to the U.K. for only the fifth time in her 68-year reign.
The address — broadcast on TV, radio and social media — was made as the coronavirus pandemic continues to grip the country, where more than 4,900 coronavirus-related deaths have been recorded as of Saturday.
“I am speaking to you at what I know is an increasingly challenging time, a time of disruption in the life of our country: a disruption that has brought grief to some, financial difficulties to many, and enormous changes to the daily lives of us all,” said the British monarch, speaking from Windsor Castle.
The 93-year-old thanked those working on the National Health Service’s front line and others providing vital support during the crisis.
“I hope in the years to come everyone will be able to take pride in how they responded to this challenge. And those who come after us will say that the Britons of this generation were as strong as any. That the attributes of self-discipline, of quiet good-humored resolve and of fellow-feeling still characterize this country,” she added. “We will succeed, and that success will belong to every one of us.”
The address was made less than a week after Prince Charles came out of self-isolation after he tested positive for the coronavirus, and was made in consultation with the British government. It was filmed by a single cameraman wearing protective equipment, while all the other technical staff worked from another room.
Aside from her annual Christmas messages, the queen has made a special televised address only four times before, the second occasion following the death of Princess Diana in 1997.
Sunday’s address was watched by 24 million viewers across the U.K., with just over 14 million watching on BBC One.
Monday April 6: Updated to include viewing figures
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