- The Queen stood with her waiting lady instead of Kate Middleton and Camilla, Duchess of Cornwall, at the memorial service of the royal family on Sunday.
- It is tradition that royals are in order of rank. In recent years, the monarch has stood on the same balcony as Middleton and Camilla, as they are two future wives.
- That year, however, social distancing meant the three royals couldn’t have shared a balcony, according to The Mirror.
- Royal Central reports that the queen’s waiting lady has isolated herself with the monarch, so “it was much safer for her to go with the queen”.
- You can find more stories on the Insider homepage.
Social distancing may have prevented Queen Elizabeth II from following tradition at the royal family’s memorial service on Sunday.
Members of the royal family gathered at the cenotaph in London to pay tribute to those who lost their lives in battle. Prince William, Prince Edward and Princess Anne were among those placing wreaths at the cenotaph while the Queen, Kate Middleton and Camilla watched the service from the balconies of the Foreign and Commonwealth Office.
Unlike in previous years, however, Her Majesty was not accompanied by a family member on the balcony.
Chris Jackson / WPA-Bilder / Getty Images
The 94-year-old monarch stood with her waiting lady, Susan Rhodes, while the Duchess of Cambridge and Duchess of Cornwall – albeit some distance – stood together on a separate balcony.
It is a royal tradition that family members rank in order of rank at the event. Last year the Queen stood on the same balcony as Camilla and Middleton as they are two future wives. The husbands of the Duchess of Cornwall and the Duchess of Cambridge, Prince Charles and Prince William, are closest to Her Majesty in first and second places on the throne.
Meanwhile, the Duchess of Sussex was standing on a separate balcony with Sophie, the Countess of Wessex and Tim Laurence.
The Queen also dated Middleton and Camilla in 2018 and was accompanied by her husband Prince Philip in 2017.
The Mirror reports that this year things were different from social distancing. The Queen, Camilla and Middleton did not have enough space to share a balcony at a safe distance, the publication said.
Meanwhile, Royal Central reports that the Queen’s waiting lady has been preferred to a royal one because she is self-isolating with Her Majesty.
“Mrs. Rhodes, who is believed to have been part of the ‘HMS Bubble’, accompanied Her Majesty on the balcony, ”reports Charlie Proctor of Royal Central.
“Since Mrs. Rhodes has isolated herself with the 94-year-old monarch, it was much safer for her to accompany the queen than for someone who lives in a different household.”
Earlier this year there were reports that Her Majesty’s inner circle formed a “bubble” which was self-isolating for two weeks before joining her at her Balmoral Castle holiday home in Scotland.
It is not clear how many employees decided to isolate themselves with the monarch. The Sun reported in October that around 20 employees, including housekeeping, laundry and maintenance workers, were in conflict with the palace over asking to self-isolate in the royal household during the Christmas season, meaning they couldn’t spend it with their families.
Buckingham Palace did not immediately respond to Insider’s request for comment on the article.
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