Camilla to attend her first Garter Day procession says Palmer
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The Queen is today investing new knights in her Order of the Garter at Windsor Castle today, ahead of a short service at St. George’s Chapel. The ceremony, which dates back 700 years, will see Camilla, Duchess of Cornwall, Sir Tony Blair and Baroness Amos, a member of the House of Lords, all be accepted into Britain’s most prestigious royal order of chivalry. The traditional procession sees participants wear grand velvet robes, insignia and plumed hats.
The Queen usually leads the Order of the Garter, which was established by King Edward III in 1348.
However, the monarch’s attendance at this year’s ceremony has been thrown into doubt due to her recent mobility issues, which have seen her scale back her public appearances including at her Platinum Jubilee celebrations earlier this month.
Her Majesty’s attendance at today’s event has not been confirmed by Buckingham Palace.
Amid the doubts over the Queen’s involvement, an expert has claimed there is “no way” she will be able to walk at the ceremony.
Marlene Koenig is a US-based writer, royal historian and librarian who has researched Britain’s Royal Family for more than 40 years.
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Speaking to Express.co.uk, she said: “There is no way the Queen would be able to walk from Windsor Castle, down around to the steps of St. George’s Chapel with the heavy Garter robes on.
“I think that is going to be the one thing we are going to miss. Will she ride in a carriage?”
Ms Koenig is set to attend today’s Order of the Garter ceremony after winning a ticket for the event in a lottery.
The historian described the significance of Camilla being invested into the Queen’s exclusive group of knights.
She said: “I am so excited. I have been before, but I want to see Camilla.
“She is only the second spouse of the heir to the throne – the first one was Prince Philip – to be given the garter.
“Normally she would be the first garter appointment by Charles, and I just cannot wait to see her in her Garter robes.”
The royal historian also looked at the recent pattern of the Queen increasingly ceding her royal duties to the Prince of Wales and other royals.
The future King was joined by Prince William last month for the State Opening of Parliament.
The first and second in line to the throne attended the event on behalf of the Queen in their roles as “counsellors of state”, meaning they can perform Her Majesty’s official duties if she is unwell.
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Ms Koenig claimed that the nation should expect more of the monarch’s duties to be carried out by other royals.
She said: “They were there as councillors of state. It is not a surprise.
“You have a Sovereign who is 96 years old and an heir who is in his seventies — so, it is not surprising that she is delegating.”
The historian also detailed how the monarch is still carrying out some desk-based duties amid her mobility issues.
She said: “She is still signing off on things and is sharing the red boxes with Charles.
“William, of course, is not included in that, because he has no constitutional role yet, but I think it is also good for him because he will be King.
“His father could live another 20 years. But I think it is inevitable.
“I think we will see more of it after the Jubilee, depending on the Queen’s health.”
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