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CoronavirusThe Netherlands

The King and Queen of the Netherlands apologise for social distancing mistake

King Willem-Alexander and Queen Maxima

King Willem-Alexander and Queen Maxima of the Netherlands have issued a personal apology on Twitter after breaching social distancing guidelines while on holiday.

In an image shared on social media, the royal couple were seen standing close to a member of staff at a restaurant they visited while spending time on the Greek island of Milos. It led to comment and debate as all three people in the photo are shoulder to shoulder rather than the recommended 1 metre plus apart to stop the spread of coronavirus.

On August 24th 2020, the Dutch King and Queen said, in a tweet, that ”a photo appeared in the media in which we didn’t keep enough social distance. In the spontaneity of the moment, we didn’t pay enough attention to that. Of course, we should have.”

The message continues ”Compliance with coronavirus rules is essential on holiday as well to get the virus under control.”

The tweet is signed ”WA & Maxima”, indicating it is a personal message from the King and Queen of the Netherlands.

The couple have been on holiday for the past weeks with their three daughters, Princess Catharina-Amalia, Princess Alexia and Princess Ariane.

At the weekend, Crown Princess Mary of Denmark apologised on the official royal Instagram after mistakenly shaking hands with someone on an engagement. She also urged everyone to wear face masks to stop the spread of the virus.

About author

Lydia Starbuck is Jubilee and Associate Editor at Royal Central and the main producer and presenter of the Royal Central Podcast and Royal Central Extra. Lydia is also a pen name of June Woolerton who is a journalist and writer with over twenty years experience in TV, radio, print and online. Her latest book, A History of British Royal Jubilees, is out now. Her new book, The Mysterious Death of Katherine Parr, will be published in March 2024. June is an award winning reporter, producer and editor. She's appeared on outlets including BBC 5 Live, BBC Radio Ulster and BBC Local Radio and has also helped set up a commercial radio station. June is also an accomplished writer with a wide range of material published online and in print. She is the author of two novels, published as e-books. She is also a marriage registrar and ceremony celebrant.