The Queen

Queen Video Calls Personnel To Hear About Their Work

Her Majesty the Queen has spoken to members of the UK’s Armed Forces to hear how their lives have been impacted by the coronavirus pandemic.

Three personnel from around the world, as well as the Chief of the Defence Staff (CDS), General Sir Nick Carter, took part in the discussion over video call.

After the Queen said "good morning" to start the call, the CDS described the event as a "great honour" for the Armed Forces, adding: "I think these three individuals, Your Majesty, give you a snapshot of the breadth of activity that Your Majesty’s Armed Forces are engaged in around the world today."

The Queen heard about how the outbreak has increased the pressure on military families, with many unable to see their loved ones due to travel restrictions.

Her Majesty's conversation with personnel follows a message she made to mark Armed Forces Day in June, where she thanked all service personnel for their dedication.

Lieutenant Colonel Barrie Terry, currently deployed to Mali, has not seen his family since last year.

He spoke to her Majesty about how his wife has been training other nurses to treat COVID patients.

Able Rate Sophie Levy, on her first operational deployment on board RFA Argus in the Caribbean, spoke to the Queen from her cabin on board the ship.

She explained her role as an aircraft handler, ensuring helicopters are prepared for flight.

Argus' crew will remain in the Caribbean throughout the summer to offer support as the hurricane season approaches.

Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II during the video call with personnel (Picture: Buckingham Palace).

"It sounds as though you’re rather busy," Her Majesty said, to which AB Levy replied: "I definitely am, Ma’am."

As part of the Queen’s Colour Squadron, Lance Corporal Shanwayne Stephens reminisced about the times he has represented the Royal Air Force for state events in the presence of her Majesty and other royals.

These include State Openings of Parliament and the annual Festival of Remembrance.

Having been in the Queen’s Colour Squadron for eight years, he said his job is something he knows "quite well".

As a member of Jamaica’s bobsled team, LCpl Stephens also told the Queen about how he has been continuing his training amid the lockdown.

Smiling, the Queen said: "Gosh, sounds a very dangerous job," to which LCpl Stephens replied: "It can be quite dangerous, but we try to mitigate any sort of danger."

At the end of the call, Her Majesty said: "It's very interesting to hear how far spread everybody is in different places."

"Yes it’s just been a snapshot, Your Majesty, because as you’ll appreciate we could go further afield," replied Gen Carter.

"We were slightly nervous about the technology, it's interesting how well the technology works from the Caribbean, on board the Argus."

The Queen then said: "It’s very interesting to hear about all those deployments, and obviously, everybody’s been extremely busy with the pandemic, haven’t they, and doing a wonderful job.

"I’m very glad to have been able to meet all of you, and the best of luck."

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