Armed trespasser arrested at Windsor Castle as Queen celebrates Christmas

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A man has been arrested by police on suspicion of trespass after allegedly trying to break into Windsor Castle on Christmas morning as the Queen marked the big day in private inside.

The suspect, believed to be 19 years old, was also allegedly carrying an offensive weapon at the time of his arrest, police said..

Superintendent Rebecca Mears, said: “An investigation is ongoing following this incident and we are working with colleagues from the Metropolitan police.

“The man has been arrested on suspicion of breach or trespass of a protected site and possession of an offensive weapon. He remains in custody at this time.

“We can confirm security processes were triggered within moments of the man entering the grounds and he did not enter any buildings.

“Members of the Royal Family have been informed about the incident.

“We do not believe there is a wider danger to the public.”

The incident unfolded hours before the Queen movingly spoke about her late husband as she empathised with families missing loved ones in her pre-recorded Christmas Day speech to the nation.

But earlier that day the Queen did not make an appearance at St George's Church in Windsor, despite Charles, Camilla, Edward and Sophie all attending a service.

She is normally a regular attendee, and often draws crowds of well-wishers in pre-Covid times.

Her absence this morning has not yet been explained and it may be that she has decided to attend church privately later in the day.

When asked, Buckingham Palace said the matter was a private one.

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The monarch, who lost Prince Philip this year after 73 years of marriage, used her festive address to give hope for the future.

Queen Elizabeth, in what is likely to be regarded as her most fulsome public tribute to her “beloved Philip” since he died, remarked how his “mischievous, enquiring twinkle was as bright at the end as when I first set eyes on him”, as she empathised with families who had lost loved ones this year.

She also spoke fondly of her eldest son, the Prince of Wales, his wife, the Duchess of Cornwall, and of the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge, for their focus on climate change.

But there was no reference – either on screen or by name during the nine-minute broadcast – to her middle son, Prince Andrew, nor the Duke and Duchess of Sussex, the trio having stepped back from royal duties.

There was, however, tacit mention of Lilibet, the Sussexes’ daughter, as one of four great-grandchildren born in 2021.

But it was the Queen’s long-serving consort, who died in April aged 99, who took centre stage for the festive message.

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