'I'm glad to meet you mechanically:' Queen hands out poetry prize virtually following hospital stay

Credit: Buckingham Palace

The Queen handed out a poetry prize "mechanically" in her first appearance since announcing she would not be attending the climate change summit, COP26, as she continues to rest under doctor's orders following an overnight hospital stay.

Giving out the The Queen's Gold Medal for Poetry virtually to poet David Constantine, who was accompanied by Poet Laureate Simon Armitage, her Majesty said: "I am very glad to have the chance to met you, even if only mechanically, this morning."

As Mr Armitage handed the medal to Mr Constantine at Buckingham Palace, the Queen, who appeared on screen via videolink from Windsor Castle, where she is in residence, said: "I don't know what you with it, do you put it in a cupboard?"

David Constantine (left), with Poet Laureate Simon Armitage, being presented with The Queen's Gold Medal for Poetry, at Buckingham Palace. Credit: Buckingham Palace

Mr Constantine said he would show it to his children and grandchildren who "were waiting at home".

"It's rather a nice medal, isn't it?" her Majesty replied.

The Queen appears on a screen via videolink from Windsor Castle. Credit: Buckingham Palace

It was her first overnight stay at a medical facility in eight years.

Her Majesty announced earlier this week she will not be attending COP26 next week following advice to rest.

The 95-year-old monarch was due to attend the summit in Glasgow on Monday 1 November with Prince Charles and Camilla as well as Prince William and Kate.

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In a statement released on Tuesday, however, Buckingham Palace said: "Following advice to rest, The Queen has been undertaking light duties at Windsor Castle. Her Majesty has regretfully decided that she will no longer travel to Glasgow to attend the Evening Reception of COP26 on Monday, 1st November.

"Her Majesty is disappointed not to attend the reception but will deliver an address to the assembled delegates via a recorded video message."

The Queen returned to work on Tuesday carrying out virtual audiences from Windsor Castle for the first time since she spent a night in hospital and was ordered to rest by her doctors.