The Queen may not be returning to public duties any time soon, as Covid-19 restrictions make public engagements unsafe for what could be years.

The 94-year-old monarch is in lockdown at Windsor Castle and care is being taken to ensure the Queen does not come into contact with the virus.

According to The Sun, courtiers are preparing for the likelihood of having to keep her indoors until after the UK summer.

The absence is set to be the Queen's longest during her 68-year-reign, though she apparently does not want to stop working.

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The Queen is receiving updates from Parliament through her red boxes and keeping to her weekly call with Prime Minister Boris Johnson.

However, courtiers see clear issues with her returning to frontline work and the risk of catching the virus.

Royal biographer Andrew Morton believes it is unlikely the Queen will be allowed to return to her normal public duties at all.

Prince Philip has already retired from public duties. Photo / Getty Images
Prince Philip has already retired from public duties. Photo / Getty Images

Morton feels the new normal may be seeing the Queen via TV or video links and her diary will be entirely cleared until autumn.

The wedding of her granddaughter Princess Beatrice has been cut from the calendar, as well as her beloved Chelsea Flower Show, the Derby and Royal Ascot.

The Queen's Birthday Honours list that was due next month is also to be postponed.

Morton said: "It's terribly sad but I can't see how the Queen can resume her usual job.

"The Covid-19 virus isn't going away soon and will be with us for months, if not years. It would be far too risky for the Queen to start meeting people regularly.

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"She has always loved getting out and meeting people but she can't take the risk.

"How can she carry out investitures, meet ambassadors, do walkabouts and visit places without meeting people at close range?

"If she gets the bug, it could be fatal and would put Prince Philip at risk."

He continued: "Prince Charles is, of course, over 70 himself but he has had the virus and probably has immunity now.

"The Queen's speech last month was brilliant and it brought the country together. To quote Churchill, it was her finest hour, but from now on we are maybe only going to be seeing her on video links.

"The Queen's address on Friday was inspirational because she served during the war and she lifted spirits because she has authority from her lifetime of experiences."

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Yesterday a Buckingham Palace spokesman told The Sun: "The Queen continues to be busy and will follow appropriate advice on engagements."