Queen attends ceremony at Balmoral marking start of first holiday since death of Prince Philip

The Queen inspecting a Guard of Honour at Balmoral on Monday Credit: PA

The Queen has received an official welcome at Balmoral Castle as she marked the start of her first annual holiday in Scotland since the death of Prince Philip.

In a small ceremony outside the castle gates the Queen, 95, inspected a Guard of Honour from Balaklava Company from The Royal Regiment of Scotland.

The Queen serves as the Colonel-in-Chief of The Royal Regiment of Scotland.

Shetland Pony Lance Corporal Cruachan IV, was present for the ceremony. Credit: PA

The Pipes and Drums of the regiment’s 3rd Battalion performed during the ceremony and the Royal Regiment of Scotland’s mascot, Shetland Pony Lance Corporal Cruachan IV, also took part.

Scotland has been a welcome place of sanctuary for the royal family since Queen Victoria’s day.

Credit: PA

The Queen is unlikely to be alone for very long as members of her family are invited to spend time with her at Balmoral every summer.

A picture released following Philip’s death in April showed the Queen and her late husband surrounded by their great-grandchildren at their Scottish home.

The Queen greeting members of the public who have come to view the ceremony. Credit: PA

This is the first time the event, which usually marks the start of the Queen's annual stay in Scotland, has taken place since 2019 as the ceremony was cancelled last year.

It is also the first time the event has taken place without her late husband the Duke of Edinburgh.

The Queen has been in Scotland since July 23 but has been staying at Craigowan Lodge while the castle remained opened to the public.

Credit: PA
Credit: PA

Despite being on holiday, work still continues for the head of state as every day she receives updates from Government ministers and from her representatives in the Commonwealth and foreign countries, information in the form of policy papers, Cabinet documents and other State papers for her attention.

These are sent up to her by private secretaries in the red boxes also used by government ministers to carry confidential documents.

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