Queen Elizabeth donned a big smile and her best spring-inspired outfit for her first in-person royal engagement of the year.
Clearly thrilled to be back out doing what she does best, the 94-year-old visited the Commonwealth Air Forces Memorial in Runnymede, Surrey, to mark the centenary of the Royal Australian Air Force.
Her Majesty noticeably went maskless after recently receiving her second dose of the Covid jab.
It is the first time the monarch has been seen in public since December when she welcomed Prince William and Kate Middleton back to Windsor Castle after their whistle-stop tour of Britain to thank key workers for their efforts during the pandemic.
It’s also the first time she’s been seen since Prince Harry and Meghan Markle’s bombshell Oprah Winfrey interview.
Sporting a hat bedecked with faux daffodils and orchids, the queen proved to be in great spirits. She even cracked a joke while quizzing one Australian serviceman about his work with jets, playfully asking if they were “being sent off to chase the Russians?” to which he dutifully retorted, “That’s correct, ma'am, it's a lot of fun for us!”
She also quipped on her arrival that “it’s a very long time since I've been here”. She originally opened the memorial in her coronation year, on 17 October 1953.
Her Majesty has been quarantining in her “Windsor bubble” and is set to spend a quiet Easter with Prince Philip, who recently returned home after a month spent in hospital for treatment for his heart condition.
While the royal family traditionally mark Easter Sunday with a church service at St George’s Chapel in Windsor, this year it will not take place due to Covid-19 restrictions.
Sources: dailymail.co.uk, express.co.uk