For the Danish Royal Family, these first days of the New Year were to be marked by large dinners where everyone was dressed in uniforms and gala dresses. This was not the case this year. The long tradition had to give way to the corona-virus. The planned New Year’s party at Christiansborg Castle for the Prime Minister and other representatives of official Denmark, which should have taken place on 4 January 2021, was already cancelled before Christmas due to the development in the COVID-19 situation.
Instead of the large festivities, Her Majesty Queen Margrethe received the Court Marshal and the Cabinet Secretary in the Knights’ Hall in Christian IX’s Palace at Amalienborg on January 4th 2021. On this occasion the Court Marshal spoke for Her Majesty on behalf of the Court. The court marshal’s speech to the Queen was recorded and then shared with the other members of the Royal Court. Subsequently, the Cabinet Secretary handed over written New Year’s greetings to the Queen from the Prime Minister, the Speaker of the Parliament as well as a number of the country’s top officials and the diplomatic corps.
It was in October of 2020 that Queen Margrethe of Denmark decided to cancel her annual New Year’s galas as a result of the continued spread of COVID-19 in Denmark. During the Queen’s reign, the traditional New Year’s celebration in the Royal House has only been cancelled once before. It happened in 2005 as a result of the tsunami in Southeast Asia at Christmas 2004.
In October it was announced that a small New Year’s party will be held at Christiansborg Castle on 4 January 2021 for the Prime Minister and a few other representatives of official Denmark. This was later also cancelled as the infection situation in Denmark became more serious.
The grand New Year’s dinner for the government, the Speaker of the Danish Parliament, representatives of official Denmark and the Royal Court should have taken place on 1 January 2021. The subsequent New Year’s dinners for the Officers Corps, the Diplomatic Corps, the Armed Forces and the Danish Emergency Management Agency, as well as representatives of major national organizations and royal patronages, were set for 4 and 5 January 2021.
This is not the first time Queen Margrethe has had to cancel large festivities due to the pandemic. It was in April last year that Queen Margrethe turned 80 years old. The anniversary was actually to be celebrated with a large-scale party, but that was not the case. Due to the coronavirus pandemic, the Danish royal family had to cancel that, too.