Queen to Skip Involvement in Remembrance Sunday Ceremony

The Queen will break with tradition and not lay a wreath at the Cenotaph this year as part of the annual Remembrance Sunday, with Prince Charles carrying out the duties instead.

She will not take part in placing the wreath at the base of the Whitehall monument, which requires the 91-year-old monarch to walk backwards down the stone steps, instead watching the ceremony from the Foreign Office balcony.

A Buckingham Palace spokeswoman confirmed the decision, claiming the Queen “wishes to be alongside the Duke of Edinburgh and he will be in the balcony” on the November 12 ceremony.

It will be the second time the Prince of Wales has laid the wreath after standing in for the Queen when she was on a trip to Kenya 34 years ago.

It has also been announced that Prince Philip’s equerry will lay his wreath.

The Queen has not laid wreaths in six previous ceremonies since her coronation, with two occasions involving her pregnancies with Prince Andrew in 1959 and Prince Edward in 1963.

The other four occasions were when she was on visits abroad – in 1961 when she was in Ghana, in 1963 when she was in Brazil, 1983 when she visited Kenya and 1999 while in South Africa.

It will be the first time she will observe the ceremony from a nearby balcony as head of state.

Remembrance Sunday is seen a significant event in the Queen’s royal diary as head of the armed forces.

BBC Royal correspondent Peter Hunt said the change was “another sign of the Royal Family in transition”.

It was announced in May that Prince Philip was retiring from public duties, but the palace said he would still appear alongside the Queen for some engagements.

It came as the Remembrance Sunday ceremony was made shorter in 2015 to limit the amount of time the Queen, Prince Philip and the veterans in attendance would have to stand. It included making some members of the Royal Family lay wreaths together rather than separately.

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