The Queen has stepped out for her first royal engagement in over seven months.

Her Majesty was joined by her grandson, Prince William, on Thursday as they met with the Salisbury novichok poisoning heroes.

The 94-year-old royal headed to Wiltshire to speak with staff who were involved in identifying the deadly nerve agent in Salisbury.

Despite the current coronavirus pandemic, neither royal wore a mask.

It was the first engagement outside a royal palace for the Queen since the Commonwealth Ceremony at Westminster Abbey on March 9.

Her visit follows after it was announced that London would go into Tier 2 restrictions at midnight on Friday, as the country is still struggling in its battle against the deadly virus.

Many were shocked by the royals decision to ditch the masks.

TV personality Piers Morgan tweeted: “Why no masks or social distancing? Sorry, but this is not a smart move by the royal family as the virus rages and the country heads into another lockdown.”

The palace said that the decision to not wear masks was made after consulting the Queen’s medical team.

“Specific advice has been sought from the medical household and relevant parties, and all necessary precautions taken, working closely with (the laboratory).”

The centre also tested the 48 staff members who came into contact the royals for COVID-19 before the visit could take place.

The Queen officially opened the £35 million ($A64 million) Energetics Analysis Centre at the high-security Defence Science and Technology Laboratory (DSTL).

The centre tweeted today: “We’re delighted to have received the royal seal of approval for DSTL’s science inside defence and security, with Her Majesty the Queen and His Royal Highness the Duke of Cambridge visiting our site near Salisbury this morning.”

Her Majesty and Prince William were given a private tour of the Energetics Enclosure.

Together they were shown a display of weaponry and tactics used in counter intelligence.

The royal engagement follows after the Queen returned to Windsor Castle earlier this month.

She has started back her work at Buckingham Palace after being held in a “ring of steel” by palace chiefs since March.

Teams of 24 key aides have worked three weeks on and three weeks off to keep the monarch safe from COVID-19.

Although the Queen has held private engagements inside Windsor Castle during the pandemic, she has not been seen out in public or attending engagements since March 9.

This article originally appeared on Over60.