Royal holiday cancelled

King Willem-Alexander and Queen Maxima of the Netherlands have returned home after just one day in their private villa in Porto Heli.  They headed off to the Greek sun on Friday but returned on Saturday evening 17th October.  The royal family flew out on a government plane but were immediately criticised for going on holiday when a new partial lockdown was introduced and the Dutch population was advised to stay at home as much as possible to curb the spread of Covid-19.  The daily tally of Coronavirus infections continues to grow in the Netherlands.  On Saturday, more than 8,000 new cases were recorded for the first time since the country's outbreak began. All bars, restaurants and cannabis 'coffee shops' have been ordered to close for four weeks.  The Dutch PM called the trip "an error in judgement"

The King and Queen, together with their three daughters Princess Catherina-Amalia, Princess Alexia and Princess Ariane, released a statement following their decision to return home, saying: "We have seen people's reaction to media reports, they are intense and they have affected us.  We do not want to create any uncertainity about it.  In order to get the Covid-19 virus under control, it is necessary that guidelines are followed.  The discussion around our holiday does not contribute to that.  Although the King and Queen and their youngest daughter Ariane returned home on Saturday evening, the two eldest daughters, Catherina-Amalia and Alexia, had to remain in their Porto Heli private villa for a couple of days longer before they were able to obtain tickets for their flight home to the Netherlands.