Queen Elizabeth II has sprained her back and will not attend the Remembrance Sunday service in central London to remember Britain’s war dead, Buckingham Palace said Sunday.
The queen decided “with great regret” that she cannot attend the service, and was “disappointed” to miss the event, officials in a statement. The service had been expected to be the 95-year-old monarch’s first public appearance after cancelling events in recent weeks on doctors’ advice.
“As in previous years, a wreath will be laid on Her Majesty’s behalf by The Prince of Wales," the statement said. Other members of the royal family will be present as planned.
Remembrance Sunday is one of the most important events on the calendar for the queen, who served in World War II as an army driver.
Buckingham Palace officials said on Thursday that she planned to watch the ceremony at the Cenotaph memorial in central London from a balcony, as she has for several years.
The queen spent a night in a London hospital last month after being admitted for tests. On Oct. 29, the palace said she had been told to rest for two weeks. She cancelled plans to attend the U.N. climate summit in Glasgow, Scotland, but sent a video message.
The queen has continued to work from home, doing desk-based duties, during her period of rest. She has spent most of the time at Windsor Castle, west of London, and made a weekend visit to Sandringham, the royal family’s eastern England estate.
Britain’s longest-lived and longest-reigning monarch, Elizabeth is due to celebrate her Platinum Jubilee — 70 years on the throne — next year.