Queen presents first honour since being taken ill as she continues to recuperate

'She is continuing to recuperate and she is dealing with her regular red boxes of official papers,' says Buckingham Palace spokesperson

Maya Oppenheim
Wednesday 04 January 2017 10:39
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Earlier the 90-year-old sent a message of condolence to the President of Turkey, Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, following the terror attack in an Istanbul nightclub which left 39 people dead and around 70 wounded
Earlier the 90-year-old sent a message of condolence to the President of Turkey, Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, following the terror attack in an Istanbul nightclub which left 39 people dead and around 70 wounded

The Queen has given an honour to a member of her staff as she continues to recover from a heavy cold.

Queen Elizabeth missed church services on Christmas Day and New Years Day due to ill health, prompting growing concern about her health.

A spokesperson for Buckingham Palace told The Independent the Queen had presented the honour to her member of staff in person and she was continuing to recuperate.

“She is continuing to recuperate and she is dealing with her regular red boxes of official papers,” a spokesperson for the palace said.

The court circular, who makes the official record of royal engagements, recorded that the monarch made Ray Wheaton, the Queen's Page of the Chambers, a Lieutenant of the Royal Victorian Order.

Referred to as the LVO, the honour is in the Queen's personal gift and are given to those who have served her or the monarchy in a personal way. They are bestowed independently of 10 Downing Street. The Order was founded by Queen Victoria in April 1896 as a way of rewarding personal service to her.

Earlier the 90-year-old sent a message of condolence to the President of Turkey, Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, following the terror attack in an Istanbul nightclub which left 39 people dead and around 70 wounded.

“Prince Philip and I were saddened to learn of the terrible attack in Istanbul on New Year's Day,” she said in a statement. ”Our thoughts are with the families of the victims and the wounded, and with the Turkish people at this time."

The Queen and her husband, the Duke of Edinburgh, became ill in the run-up to Christmas and were late travelling to Sandringham Estate in Norfolk where they traditionally spend the Christmas period. She then missed the Christmas day church service, which she has attended nearly every year for three decades, due to her ill health.

The monarch did not attend a New Year’s Day church service. At the time Buckingham Palace said she did “not yet feel ready to attend” and was still “recuperating”.

Queen Elizabeth II is the longest-reigning monarch but has announced she will step down as patron of a number of organisations and charities before her 91st birthday which is in April.

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