The royal couple spent their anniversary 110 miles apart last year

By Stephanie Petit
November 20, 2020 09:12 AM
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Queen Elizabeth and Prince Philip are celebrating 73 years of marriage!

The royal couple, who wed on November 20, 1947, are together at Windsor Castle for their wedding anniversary, where they have been staying amid England's second national lockdown due to the coronavirus pandemic that began on November 5.

Although they won't be able to have a big gathering for the occasion, the royal family made sure to send their best wishes. In addition to social media posts celebrating the anniversary, Prince William and Kate Middleton's three children — Prince George, 7, Princess Charlotte, 5, and Prince Louis, 2 — delighted their great-grandparents with a handmade card.

Queen Elizabeth and Prince Philip
| Credit: Chris Jackson/WPA Pool/Shutterstock

The Queen, 94, and Prince Philip, 99, spent their anniversary apart last year — while the monarch held audiences in London with the ambassadors of the Republic of Suriname and the Kyrgyz Republic, her retired husband was at their Sandringham estate in Norfolk. But the Queen made sure to make a nod to the date while signing the visitors' book.

Queen Elizabeth and Prince Philip
| Credit: Steve Parsons/Press Association via Getty

"What's the date?" she cheekily asked Chatham House director Dr. Robin Niblett. When he replied that it was November 20, the monarch laughed and said: "Well, of course, I know what the date is!"

The then-Princess Elizabeth was just a teenager when she fell in love with the Greek-born Royal Navy officer. The couple wed in a grand ceremony on November 20, 1947 at Westminster Abbey – the same place where Prince William and Kate tied the knot in 2011.

At the time of their post-WWII wedding, millions of Britons were living in the aftermath of the bomb-damaged cities and coping with food rations. The November 20 service was the first major event since the end of the war.

The then Princess Elizabeth and Prince Philip on their wedding day
| Credit: Hulton-Deutsch Collection/CORBIS/Corbis via Getty

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The couple spent the first lockdown together in mid-March at Windsor Castle, which was their home until August when they headed to Balmoral Castle in Scotland for their summer break before moving onto Sandringham in September.

The pandemic has meant that the couple has been able to be together a lot more time together than usual this year. Since he retired from public life, Philip has largely lived at Sandringham while the Queen continues with her public work and duties in London and Windsor. But the Queen went traveled back up to Norfolk to spend time with Philip at Wood Farm, a smaller, more intimate property on the estate before they traveled back south.