The Queen returns to work without walking stick as she receives award
The Queen returned to work without her walking stick yesterday as she met with the Archbishop of Canterbury at Windsor Castle.
The 96-year-old monarch has been struggling with ongoing mobility issues in recent months which saw her miss some engagements in the run-up to her Platinum Jubilee celebrations.
But while she has recently been seen in public with a stick, or sat down, she stood unaided to greet the Archbishop.
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He presented her with a special Canterbury Cross for her "unstinting service" to the Church of England over the last 70 years.
The small silver cross, which was inspired by a ninth century Saxon brooch and included a triquetra pattern, was given as a "heartfelt symbol" of the church's "love, loyalty and affection".
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The citation on the cross said: "Throughout her reign, Her Majesty has duly upheld both the Christian religion and the Church of England in her roles as Defender of the Faith and Supreme Governor of the Church of England.
"Whether in the formality of opening sessions of General Synod or the more intimate context of her personal addresses to the nation and Commonwealth at Christmas, Her Majesty has made manifest her own deep faith and its relevance to all that she undertakes.
"Her subtle understanding of the changing position of the Established Church in England has sustained and encouraged laity and clergy alike.
"Her care for the unity of her people and the welfare of the least fortunate have been a constant inspiration to the whole Church. Hers is an example of the Christian life well led.
"This presentation of the Canterbury Cross is a heartfelt symbol of the love, loyalty and affection in which the Church of England holds Her Majesty and it represents the recognition and gratitude of her whole Church for her seventy years of unstinting service. God Save The Queen!"
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The Canterbury Cross is presented each year as part of the annual Lambeth Awards to a small number of recipients who have shown outstanding service to the church.
For the occasion, the Queen wore a floral midi dress and black flats.
The honour coincided with a slew of summer celebrations for the Royal Family, including the jubilee at the start of the month, Prince William's 40th birthday yesterday and Prince George's 9th birthday in July.