Tuesday saw the Queen attend her first public engagement since Prince Philip's death in April. Her Majesty attended the Opening of Parliament and viewers were surprised to see that she was sat alone after Prince Philip's throne was "removed".
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Many thought this had been done due to the Prince's passing and that it will stay like that for years to come, but HELLO! understands that Prince Philip's throne was not present to "avoid unnecessary travel" and it was an "exceptional measure".
WATCH: Queen Elizabeth II arrives at the State Opening
The Consort's Throne is always at Houghton Hall in Norfolk under the care of the Lord Great Chamberlain, unless it is needed at the State Opening. "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," sources close to the palace revealed.
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It is also understood that if at the next State Opening things are back to normal, and the Prince is seated next to the Queen as usual, the throne will be there for HRH to sit on.
Tuesday would have no doubt been a bittersweet day for the monarch as she also returned to her London residence for the first time since the pandemic began.
Prince Charles and Camilla were also present
For her outing, the 95-year-old carefully chose her outfit, which included the dress she wore on her official pictures with Prince Philip last year as they marked his 99th birthday and her aquamarine clip brooches, a sentimental gift from her parents. She also wore them in 2020 when she marked VE Day, with a moving speech from Windsor Castle, during the Covid 19 pandemic.
Normally, the Queen would wear the long crimson velvet Robe of State and the Imperial State Crown, but because of the coronavirus pandemic, the pomp and ceremony of the 2021 event have been reduced in line with government guidance.