Queen Elizabeth II has permanently moved out of her London residence, Buckingham Palace, according to The Sunday Times.
The monarch chose to self-isolate at Windsor Castle, located just outside of London, when the UK first went into lockdown in March 2020. At the time, there was no indication from the palace that it would be a permanent move — but the Queen has remained there ever since.
According to The Times’ royal editor Roya Nikkhah, Her Majesty has decided to make Windsor her “forever home” and will undertake future royal engagements from Windsor Castle instead of Buckingham Palace.
“Windsor is the place she loves. She has her memories with Prince Philip there, she has her ponies there and family nearby. It makes sense,” royal author Hugo Vickers told The Sunday Times.
Although the monarch originally intended to remain at the palace through the 10-year refurbishment, the pandemic allowed her to reconsider where she felt most comfortable, Palmer reported.
The renovations are expected to cost $500 million, according to British Heritage.
The palace has served as the royal family’s official residence since 1837 and is considered the administrative headquarters of the monarch, according to the royal website. It has 775 rooms, including 19 state rooms, 52 royal and guest bedrooms, 188 staff bedrooms, 92 offices, and 78 bathrooms, the website added.
The London residence is still expected to host a number of events in honor of the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee weekend in June, including the Trooping the Colour parade and the BBC Platinum Party at the Palace.
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