Queen Elizabeth is once again stepping back from one of her traditional royal duties due to her ongoing health issues.
The monarch typically attends a welcome event at Balmoral Castle in Scotland every year to celebrate the beginning of her summer vacation as she usually moves into the home in August and stays through October. But on Monday it was revealed that, this year, the queen will instead be welcomed privately on the grounds of the Highlands estate instead of with the typical ceremony held outside the castle’s gates. The event usually sees the queen inspect a guard of honor and involves photographers, well-wishers, military pipers, and soldiers from a Scottish regiment. These plans have been altered to accommodate the royal who has had to cancel and withdraw from numerous public appearances and duties in recent months due to her mobility issues. A royal source confirmed to People that the change was made for “reasons of comfort.”
In July, Queen Elizabeth formally lightened her workload and also passed down a few of her responsibilities to her son, Prince Charles. When Buckingham Palace released this year’s annual report, it revealed that the monarch’s role as Head of State and Head of Nation has been formally amended and her royal duties have been changed from thirteen bullet points to a vaguer description of responsibilities. The list of duties she “must fulfill” has also been removed, per The Sunday Telegraph. It was the first time in more a decade that there has been a formal change to the monarch’s responsibilities.
The queen has also been ceding more and more of her public engagements to Prince Charles in recent years, including allowing him to formally open British Parliament, which was the first time in almost 60 years she did not attend the ceremony. In June, Charles also stepped in to represent his mother at Trooping the Colour as well as when she skipped the first day of the Royal Ascot due to mobility issues. During her Platinum Jubilee, the queen also had to miss the church service held in her honor due to “discomfort.”
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