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Queen Sonja comments on King Harald’s health

Oskar Aanmoen/Royal Central

There was great interest in Queen Sonja’s visit to Lillehammer on Friday. It was unclear in the morning hours whether the Queen would attend the event as planned following the hospitalisation of King Harald. Finally, the county governor of Innlandet made a statement that the Royal Court confirmed that the visit would continue, without the King present.

This was the first time anyone in the Norwegian Royal Family appeared in public after King Harald was admitted to hospital on Friday morning. King Harald was hospitalised due to trouble breathing. Crown Prince Haakon has been installed as a regent and will take over all his father’s duties until 4 October. Queen Sonja was in the hospital with her husband until 10:45 today.

To the press, Her Majesty said: “It looks like it is going very well. The King himself is happy and the doctor is happy. He will take some samples and will soon be on his feet.” When asked if the King was on his feet, the Queen said: “Not yet, but he will probably be on his feet soon.”

Only a few hours before Queen Sonja arrived in Lillehammer, Prime Minister Erna Solberg said to TV2: “I am glad to hear that it sounds like the King is only being checked up as a precaution. I am sure we will see an active King Harald perform his duties this autumn.”

The King was supposed to join the Queen at Lillehammer to mark that the process to make Queen Sonja childhood home a museum is now complete. Queen Sonja’s childhood home is now located in the 1930 area in Maihaugen Museum on Lillehammer. The villa was moved from Vinderen in Oslo to Maihaugen and opened to the public in 2018.

The house has been restored back to the way it was while Sonja Haraldsen lived there from 1937–1968. The house was built for the Haraldsen family, and Sonja lived here most of the time until she married then Crown Prince Harald in 1968. The house was built in 1935. Inside, the rooms are decorated as in the period when the Queen lived there.

About author

Senior Europe Correspondent Oskar Aanmoen has a master in military and political history of the Nordic countries. He has written five books on historical subjects and more than 700 articles for Royal Central. He has also interview both Serbian and Norwegian royals. Aanmoen is based in Oslo, Norway.