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Queen sat alone in Parliament as poignant reminder of Prince Philip was ‘not needed’

Queen's 'resilience' is 'hugely admirable' says expert

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The Queen has carried on with her duties in recent weeks after her husband of 73 years died last month, with her latest engagement being the Opening of Parliament on Tuesday. Viewers were quick to notice the 95-year-old was sat alone as she prepared to give her traditional Queen’s Speech. The decision to remove the Duke of Edinburgh’s throne was an “exceptional measure” to “avoid unnecessary travel”, rather than being a poignant reminder that Philip had died, an insider has claimed.

Palace sources told Hello!: “Because The Prince of Wales was seated separately from The Queen, and mindful of avoiding unnecessary travel, it was felt, exceptionally, that the throne was not needed on this occasion.”

The Consort’s Throne is usually stored at Houghton Hall in Norfolk and looked after by the Lord Great Chamberlain.

The throne is also likely to return to Parliament for the next State opening next year, if there are no longer Covid restrictions.

Prince Charles is also expected to attend with his mother too.

When Prince Phillip retired in 2017, Charles started sitting in the throne alongside her Majesty.

The Queen also made a statement with her outfit this year as she did not wear the traditional long crimson velvet Robe of State and the Imperial State Crown.

Instead, she opted for the same dress she wore for her official pictures with Prince Philip last year on his 99th birthday.

She also wore her aquamarine clip brooches, which were a gift from her parents.

The last time she wore the brooches was last year when she marked VE Day with a speech from Windsor Castle.

Her different choice of outfit was due to the event being scaled back this year in accordance with Government guidance.

MPs and members of the House of Lords were required to wear masks this year too and everyone involved also took a Covid test before the ceremony.

There were fewer politicians and peers in attendance, with only 74 people in the chamber, including the Queen, Prince Charles, Camilla, Speaker Sir Lindsay Hoyle, Prime Minister Boris Johnson and Labour leader Sir Keir Starmer.

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There were also representatives from the House of Lords and House of Commons and those involved in the ceremonial procession.

Philip attended his first state opening of parliament in 1958, but sat on a chair rather than his throne.

Footage from the time showed the Duke sitting a short distance away from his wife.

Meanwhile, the Queen also returned to her London residence Buckingham Palace this week for the first time since the pandemic began early last year.

Earlier this week, a new video of Her Majesty was shared onto the Royal Family’s official Instagram account, which showed the Queen speaking fondly of her memories of achieving a Life Saving Award with the Royal Life Saving Society in 1941, when she was aged only 14.

When she was asked to share a memory from that time that particularly stood out, the Queen replied: “It was all done in the Bath Club, in the swimming pool and I suppose I didn’t really actually realise what I was doing because I was only twelve or something…”

She then paused and said, “Twelve or fourteen? It’s a very long time ago I’m afraid, it’s terrible!” before smiling and adding, “I think it’s changed a lot.”

The Queen then beamed as she learnt that she was the first-ever recipient of the award.

Charles also recently made a poignant reference to his father during a recent engagement as he released a new video message wishing Muslims an Eid Mubarak ahead of the end of Ramadan.

He said: “This year so many families, like my own, will have an empty seat at their dinner table and friends are no longer able to share the celebratory hug after Eid prayer.”

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