Queen Elizabeth II and senior members of the Royal Family received their fair share of social media uproar when they were pictured outside Windsor Castle earlier this week without face coverings.
Members of the public took to Twitter to share their outrage over the lack of masks, with one user stating that “the pandemic is not over.”
A critic made this remark over the photos of the Queen: “In this photo, several British royal family members have been infected with the coronavirus because of their lack of respect for health rules. The British monarchy is not an example to take. They are so arrogant and pretentious. The British monarchy is referred to by another name as the coronavirus monarchy. For example, Prince William and Kate infected a lot of people in Ireland 🇮🇪 during their trip at the start of the coronavirus crisis. Of course, the conservative extremist British media do not publish this information. It is a strange journalist who is part of the trip who returned infected with the coronavirus in the company of Prince William and Kate. The British royal family has done more harm than good during the health crisis. Currently, the British are not very monarchical.”
However, as it was pointed out on the social media site by Chris Ship, Royal Editor for ITV News, the Queen and the other royals were outdoors and observing social distancing guidelines such as standing at least six feet apart, therefore were not required to wear masks.
He stated: “They are outside. Masks are compulsory only inside where social distancing is not possible.”
According to COVID-19 guidelines in England, people must wear face coverings when indoors and where social distancing is not possible. This includes public transport, shops, and other indoor venues.
Later in the evening, several members of the Royal Family were pictured speaking with volunteers and frontline workers — this time wearing masks.
The event was an opportunity for senior members of the Royal Family to personally thank key workers for their dedication during the coronavirus crisis.
It followed a train tour by Prince William and Kate Middleton who also took time over three days to thank those workers up and down England, Scotland and Wales.
It is not the first time Queen Elizabeth has received backlash from the public over the absence of a face covering.
In October, Prince William joined the Queen at the Defence Science and Technology Laboratory at Porton Down, where neither were wearing masks as they were observing other social distancing guidelines and remained outdoors.
In November, the Queen was seen for the first time wearing a face covering as she paid tribute at the grave of the Unknown Warrior, marking 100 years since his burial in 1920.