Watch: Countess of Wessex says she is so happy as father gets the coronavirus vaccine
The Countess of Wessex has described her happiness as her father received the coronavirus vaccine, calling it an “early birthday present”.
Sophie celebrated her birthday on Wednesday 20 January, and found out in the days before that her father, Christopher Rhys-Jones, had the call up to get his vaccine against COVID-19.
The countess, 56, said she was “so happy” and praised the staff at the hospital her father had gone to during a conference for nurses.
She said: “I had a very wonderful birthday present yesterday, well it was an early birthday present because my father received his vaccine, he’s 89 years old and I’m so happy he’s actually got it.
“It’s a huge weight off my mind. He was full of praise for the way it had been handled and how quick and easy and simple the whole process was.
“That would not be happening without the care and attention of nurses in general surgeries.”
Sophie’s comments came as she joined NHS General Practice nurses and healthcare assistants at the Lincolnshire Hub conference on 20 January.
Sophie’s father is a retired sales director for an importer of industrial tyres and rubber goods.
The family lived together in Brenchley, Kent, and Sophie has a brother called David. Sophie’s mother, Mary, who was a charity worker, died in 2005.
Mother-of-two Sophie has been stepping up royal duties in the last year, and has had an increasingly public profile for her work.
The wife of Prince Edward is passionate about vision-related charities, as well as supporting women’s rights and survivors of abuse.
Sophie has spent time volunteering throughout the pandemic, lending her support to charity shops, as well as to organisations cooking meals for key workers.
Watch: Sophie, Countess of Wessex, celebrates her 56th birthday