Home » Royalty » British Royal Family The Queen receives sad news as she ends Balmoral summer break > The Queen will have received some momentous news as she ends her summer break in Balmoral and prepares to stay in Sandringham for a few weeks The Queen has received some momentous news during her summer holiday, as Barbados has announced its intention to remove Her Majesty as its head of state by November 2021. The Caribbean island aims to become a republic by the time it celebrates Barbados’ 55th anniversary of independence from Britain. A speech written by Prime Minister Mia Mottley was read out by Governor-General Dame Sandra Mason, who said: “The time has come to fully leave our colonial past behind. Barbadians want a Barbadian head of state. “This is the ultimate statement of confidence in who we are and what we are capable of achieving. Hence, Barbados will take the next logical step toward full sovereignty and become a republic by the time we celebrate our 55th anniversary of independence.” Buckingham Palace has since responded, saying “this is a matter for the government and people of Barbados.” The remarks were made as part of the Throne Speech, which outlines the government’s plans and programme ahead of parliament’s new session. The royal family have always held a strong connection to the Caribbean country and have visited various times on official tours. In December 2016, Prince Harry shone a spotlight on the importance of HIV testing as he visited an HIV drop-in centre in Bridgetown, accompanied by Barbadian singer Rihanna. The pair both took an aids test, which was filmed live. Prince Charles and Camilla visited more recently in March 2019 as part of their Caribbean tour. The Queen has travelled to Barbados six times, including during her Silver Jubilee tour in 1977 with Prince Philip.