Queen and Royal Family host G7 leaders at Cornwall's Eden Project

11 June 2021, 19:39 | Updated: 11 June 2021, 20:42

The Queen poses for family photo with G7 leaders

By Will Taylor

The Queen welcomed G7 leaders on Friday evening as the politicians plot the donation of a billion vaccines and recovery from coronavirus.

Joined by Prince Charles, the Duchess of Cornwall and the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge, the monarch hosted a reception at the Eden Project in Cornwall.

The leaders – who come from some of the world's wealthiest countries – strolled around the botanical gardens en route to the royals' evening reception.

The walk presented a chance to break away from the seriousness of the summit, which is expected to focus on delivering jabs to other countries at a time when Western nations have vaccinated significant portions of their population when others have barely got going.

Read more: G7 summit 2021: Dates, Cornwall location and participating countries revealed

Read more: G7: Boris Johnson admits leaders must learn from 'wretched pandemic'

The Queen hosted world leaders at the Eden Project
The Queen hosted world leaders at the Eden Project. Picture: PA
The Queen posed for a photo with G7 leaders
The Queen posed for a photo with G7 leaders. Picture: PA

Recovering from the damage caused by the coronavirus pandemic and taking action on climate change are also expected to be discussed.

Prince Charles said the world's reaction to Covid showed how countries can unite against climate change.

"The fight against this terrible pandemic provides a clear example of the scale and sheer speed at which the global community can tackle crises when we combine political will with business ingenuity and public mobilisation," he said.

Great Britain's movement of goods to Northern Ireland after Brexit is also set to be a topic of conversation during the summit, with US President Joe Biden maintaining a strong interest in keeping peace in the province.

Leaders and the Queen went to take a socially-distanced photo after the reception.

The Queen said: "Are you supposed to be looking as if you're enjoying yourself?"

The leaders around the Queen laughed and Prime Minister Boris Johnson said emphatically "yes".

Boris Johnson and his wife Carrie were on hand to greet the royals when they arrived at the Eden Project. It is William and Kate's first G7 event.

LBC's Ben Kentish with the latest from the G7 in Cornwall

The Queen and Mr Johnson exchanged words before the monarch led the party to the reception.

Mr Biden and his wife, Dr Jill Biden, were the last to arrive.

Read more: G7: Seven arrests after vehicles containing 'smoke bombs and paint' stopped by police

After the reception, Charles and William hosted an event for the leaders and chief executives of some of the world’s largest companies to discuss how business can work with governments on climate change.

The Queen, Camilla and Kate took part in an event celebrating the Big Lunch, an initiative spearheaded by the Eden Project which sees neighbours and communities share food each year.

Camilla has been patron of the Big Lunch since 2013.

Opening the summit earlier on Friday, Mr Johnson said the leaders needed to learn from the "wretched pandemic".

"We need to make sure that we learn the lessons from the pandemic, we need to make sure that we don't repeat some of the errors that we doubtless made in the course of the last 18 months or so," he added.

The first G7 to take place since Covid broke out, it sees the leaders taking precautions including social distancing, with the usual "family photo" taking place with gaps between the politicians.

Regular testing has taken place. One hotel in St Ives, which housed security and media, had to shut after staff caught Covid, while 12 police officers at the summit had to self-isolate after a person in their bubble returned a positive test.