For the first time in more than 40 years, Queen Elizabeth II will “dress-down” for the new UK Parliament opening following the snap elections on June 8 due to shortage of time to rehearse for the event.
In an unexpected statement delivered at downing street on Tuesday, May announced that the government would seek to hold a general election on June 8. The British Prime Minister Theresa May had taken everyone by surprise when she declared a snap general election earlier this month. British government generally last for five years, and the Conservative Party’s administration — then led by May’s predecessor David Cameron was elected in 2015.
The 91-year-old potentate is responsible for the ceremonial inauguration of the parliament business every year, which involves considerable formal courtesy and ceremony including being dressed up in flowing robes. According to ‘The Times’, this time Queen Elizabeth will wear a day dress and hat for the ceremony and the celebrations instead. She will not wear the imperial state crown abandoning the traditional Robes of state as she delivers the Queen’s Speech outlining the government’s plans for the year ahead on June 19. She will travel in car rather than by carriage, with her heavy crown being carried by an officer of state along with the sword of state and cap of maintenance, symbols of her power and authority.
Queen Elizabeth won’t wear the full ceremonial regalia
It will be the first time since 1974, when then the Prime Minister Edward Heath had called a snap election, that the Queen has not worn the full ceremonial regalia for a state opening and that such a scaled-back ceremony has taken place. The changes have been agreed between Buckingham Palace, The United Kingdom government and the parliamentary authorities because rehearsals for the state opening, which will now take place on June 19, clash with the annual Trooping the Color ceremony held to mark the monarch’s official birthday in the second week of June. Both events usually feature a Sovereign’s Escort from the Household Cavalry Regiment, with Queen Elizabeth’s route flanked by hundreds of servicemen acting as street liners.
The date also means that the Queen has had to cancel the Order of the Garter ceremony when she hands over royal medals at Windsor Castle. This has happened third time in the Queen’s reign. Buckingham Palace said in a statement: “To allow The Queen to attend in the support of the parliamentary and constitutional process, the Queen’s programme of engagements has been changed and revised. “As a result, the annual service for the Order of the Garter, which had been due to take place on 19th June, has been cancelled. Additionally, owing to the revised calendar, the state opening and inauguration of Parliament will take place with reduced and concentrated ceremonial elements,” it said.