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Queen Elizabeth II seen with family for first time since start of COVID-19 pandemic

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Queen Elizabeth II stood outside Windsor Castle with Prince Charles and Camilla.
Queen Elizabeth II stood outside Windsor Castle with Prince Charles and Camilla.   -   Copyright  Glyn Kirk/AP
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The Queen has been spotted with her family for the first time since the start of the coronavirus pandemic.

`The members of the royal family came together for a special carol service to thank frontline workers at Windsor Castle on Tuesday.

The British monarch, along with the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge, Prince Charles and the Duchess of Cornwall, welcomed local volunteers and key workers to the castle where they watched Christmas carols being performed by a Salvation Army band.

All the time observing social distancing measures, the Queen thanked the charity, along with all volunteers and key workers for their efforts throughout the pandemic.

“It was an honour to meet Her Majesty on behalf of The Salvation Army and as a representative of all voluntary organisations who have done so much incredible service throughout the pandemic," said Salvation Army Commissioner, Anthony Cotterill.

“Playing carols for the Royal Family is also a wonderful highlight during our busiest of seasons,” added Cotterill.

It came as the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge - Prince William and Catherine - concluded their three-day "Royal Train Tour" of the UK to thank volunteers and front-line workers up and down the country for their work ahead of Christmas.

"Catherine and I felt it was extremely important to visit just some of the heroes that have emerged this year to thank you for all that you have done," Prince William said at a Fareshare site in Manchester.

Queen Elizabeth confirmed last week that she will be spending Christmas quietly this year with Prince Phillip at Windsor Castle. Ordinarily, she would be preparing to go to Sandringham where the rest of the royal family would meet her to celebrate.

The monarch, 94, and her husband, Prince Phillip, 98, are in line to receive the COVID-19 vaccine in the coming weeks, as the rollout of the Pfizer vaccine to those over 80 gets underway in the UK.