In a break with tradition, the Queen will not lay a wreath at the Cenotaph on Remembrance Sunday. The 91-year-old monarch has asked her eldest son Prince Charles to take her place. She will watch the ceremony from the balcony of the Foreign and Commonwealth Office building alongside her husband Prince Philip, 96. An equerry will lay the Duke of Edinburgh's wreath. A Buckingham Palace spokeswoman said: "The Queen wishes to be alongside the Duke of Edinburgh and he will be in the balcony."
The Queen has only missed laying a wreath at the Cenotaph six times in her reign. Twice she was pregnant and the other times she was away on tour. The decision for Prince Charles to step in reflects how senior royals are carrying out more engagements on behalf of the Queen and Prince Philip, who retired in the autumn. Her grandson Prince William, 35, has increased his workload and became a full-time royal this year after quitting his job as an air ambulance pilot.
This year, members of the royal family will attend various engagements to mark Remembrance Day. Prince Harry, who holds the rank of captain in the army, will visit the Field of Remembrance at Westminster Abbey on Thursday 9 November. On Saturday 11 November, Princess Anne and Vice Admiral Sir Tim Laurence will attend the Menin Gate ceremony at Ypres, Belgium and will then visit Tyne Cot and Bedford House, Commonwealth War Graves Commission Cemeteries. The Queen and other members of the royal family, meanwhile, will attend the annual Royal Festival of Remembrance at the Royal Albert Hall.
Buckingham Palace's announcement comes after a woman was arrested over the weekend. Jessica Davey was accused of drunk and disorderly behaviour after she attempted to scale the front gates of the Queen's London residence. She was due to appear at Westminster Magistrates' Court but charges against her were dropped. A court official confirmed that the matter was withdrawn. The Queen was not present in the palace at the time of the incident, as she was spending time in her Scottish residence, Balmoral.