National Post (National Edition)



LONDON All many people want for Christmas this year is a simple hug, Britain's Queen Elizabeth said in her annual festive message, saying it would be hard for those who lost loved ones to COVID-19 pandemic or were separated by curbs on social mixing.

In her traditiona­l pre-recorded Christmas Day address, the 94-year-old monarch spoke of hope for the future while acknowledg­ing millions of Britons would be unable to have their usual family celebratio­ns this year.

“Of course for many, this time of year will be tinged with sadness; some mourning the loss of those dear to them, and others missing friends and family members distanced for safety when all they really want for Christmas is a simple hug or a squeeze of the hand,” the Queen said.

“If you are among them, you are not alone. And let me assure you of my thoughts and prayers.”

The Queen is spending the holidays quietly at Windsor Castle with her husband Prince Philip, 99.

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