Kate joined forces with Camilla, Sophie and Anne as ‘gang of four’ supported Queen


Queen Elizabeth II continued to live alone at Windsor Castle following the death of Prince Philip in April last year.

“They were called by some as the ‘gang of four’ or the ‘significant four’.”

Referring to the lonely figure cut by Queen Elizabeth II during the Duke of Edinburgh’s funeral held in the midst of lockdown restrictions at St George’s Chapel, Ms Levin went on to say it was “no surprise” Her Majesty reported welcomed this initiative.

She wrote: “Her Majesty is well known for being stoic but the sad, empty look in her eyes was unforgettable, and it was no surprise that she accepted the suggestion of a visiting rota to help her raise her spirits.”

Kate and Camilla standing next to one another

Kate and Camilla joined forces with two other royals to support the Queen after Philip’s death (Image: GETTY)

The Queen sitting alone at St George's Chapel

The Queen sat alone at St George’s Chapel during Prince Philip’s funeral (Image: GETTY)

The author stressed the importance of the inclusion of Camilla in this group of women hugely beloved by the late sovereign, as it signals just how much her relationship with the Queen and the rest of the UK has evolved over the years.

Ms Levin wrote: “Bringing Camilla on board – a woman the Queen had refused to see or speak to for years and who had been blamed for breaking up Prince Charles’s marriage to Diana, Princess of Wales – was a sign that the Duchess of Cornwall has survived the brickbats, obstacles and insults, and that finally the Queen has admitted to enjoying her company and accepts her for who she is.”

Prince Philip, the Queen’s husband of 73 years, died on April 9 last year at Windsor Castle.

The late monarch, who had spent most of the coronavirus pandemic self-isolating with the Duke of Edinburgh and a handful of their staff in Berkshire, was said to be “coping” following his funeral. Kate, Camilla and Sophie Wessex during the National Service of Remembrance

Camilla, Kate and Sophie supported the Queen after Prince Philip’s death (Image: GETTY)

However, the Mirror first reported close family members had agreed on joining forces to make sure the elderly sovereign would receive regular visits.

The team included Sophie, Countess of Wessex, Kate, the now Princess of Wales, Princess Anne and Camilla.

A source was reported saying in mid-April last year: “The Queen will not be alone.

“She will have others who care about her deeply and want to be there to support her in her most pressing hour.

The Queen smiling in a blue dress

The Queen continued to carry out engagements following the death of Prince Philip (Image: GETTY)

Princess Anne in a mint green coat

Princess Anne is the Queen’s only daughter (Image: GETTY)

“In typical fashion the Queen has insisted she is coping and despite the suggestion she had prepared herself for this day to come, everyone is well aware there is nothing like the experience when it comes.”

Camilla and King Charles are believed to have been regular visitors of the Queen and Prince Philip throughout the pandemic.

Similarly, Sophie and Prince Edward regularly headed to Windsor for socially-distanced meetings with the elderly royals at the height of lockdown.

Recalling one of their visits to castle grounds, the Countess previously told The Telegraph: “We used to see them stand on the balcony, which was about 20 feet up in the air.

“We’d see them waving. We’d shout at them and they’d shout back at us.

“It always seemed to be windy, so we could barely hear each other.”

While dealing privately with her immense loss, the Queen resumed her royal duties immediately after the end of the royal mourning period.

On April 27, she held remote audiences from Windsor Castle with foreign ambassadors.

Sophie smiling in a chequered coat

Sophie and Prince Edward visited the Queen and Prince Philip during lockdown (Image: GETTY)

This helped her to still fulfil her duties even after she started experiencing mobility issues in the autumn of last year.

Despite her worsening health, the Queen made several in-person appearances this year, including two days before her death when she met Prime Minister Liz Truss to ask her to form a new Government.


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