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Why Kate Middleton did not take the Queen's place on Remembrance Sunday

The Duchess of Cambridge stood next to the Duchess of Cornwall and the Countess of Wessex

The Duchess of Cambridge was among the senior royals to attend the Remembrance Sunday service at the Cenotaph in London.

Kate stood alongside the Duchess of Cornwall and the Countess of Wessex on the balcony of the Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office building.

There has been speculation as to whether the Duchess took the Queen's place on the day, as she was standing in the centre between Camilla and Sophie, but the three royal ladies were actually positioned on the left balcony.

READ: Why Kate Middleton wore three poppies on Remembrance Sunday

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WATCH: Camilla, Kate and Sophie watch the Remembrance Sunday service

The Duke of Kent is thought to have taken up Her Majesty's position on the day as he was standing on the central balcony (where the Queen usually watches) alongside Princess Alexandra.

Camilla, Kate and Sophie are also believed to have stood in order of precedence, with the Duchess of Cornwall being the future consort.  

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The Duke of Kent stood on the central balcony

The monarch, 95, is close to the Duke of Kent, Prince Edward, 86, who is her first cousin through their fathers, Prince George, Duke of Kent and King George VI.

He was by the Queen's side at this year's Trooping the Colour parade at Windsor Castle to mark the monarch's official birthday in June.

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The Duke of Kent and Princess Alexandra

Her Majesty was forced to pull out of the Remembrance Sunday service last-minute as she has sprained her back.

A statement released by Buckingham Palace ahead of the service read: "The Queen, having sprained her back, has decided this morning with great regret that she will not be able to attend today's Remembrance Sunday Service at the Cenotaph. Her Majesty is disappointed that she will miss the service.

"As in previous years, a wreath will be laid on Her Majesty’s behalf by The Prince of Wales. His Royal Highness, along with The Duchess of Cornwall, The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge, The Earl and Countess of Wessex, The Princess Royal and Vice Admiral Sir Tim Laurence, The Duke and Duchess of Gloucester, The Duke of Kent and Princess Alexandra will be present at the Cenotaph today as planned."

It is understood it is a recent sprain and there were concerns over the impact of a car journey and a period of standing on her recovery. The Queen, who recently enjoyed a private break at her Sandringham estate, has remained at Windsor Castle.  

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