The Queen used a walking stick for the first time in 20 years while attending the Westminster Abbey service.
Queen Elizabeth II, appeared at the service that marked the centenary of the Royal British Legion and was handed the stick after stepping from her state limousine.
She was dressed in a long, dark blue coat with a matching hat, black gloves and shoes, and her signature handbag.
The Monarch, who is the Royal British Legion’s patron, did not arrive by the traditional great west door but via the poet’s yard entrance, a shorter route to her seat.
She was last seen using a walking aid in 2003 and 2004 after she had an operation to remove torn cartilage from her right knee.
The queen’s daughter, Princess Anne, handed her the stick when she stepped out of her royal vehicle, before making her way inside the abbey, walking steadily with her aid across the cobbled floor. She walked freely and confidently, with the stick providing her with a safety net as she made her way from her state limo to the event.
She arrived at Westminster Abbey with her daughter, Princess Royal, and was welcomed outside the church by the Dean of Westminster, The Very Reverend Dr David Hoyle.
The Queen and Princess Anne joined the congregation that included serving military personnel, veterans, and their families from the U.K. and Commonwealth countries. Princess Anne gave a reading during the service, along with other members of the armed forces community.
The service highlighted the work of the Royal British Legion, which was founded in 1921 to care for service members and their families after World War I.
The service was led by the Dean of Westminster, while the Legion’s president led the Act of Rededication, reaffirming the organization’s commitment to its work and service.
According to the Press Association, the developments are understood to be tailored for Her Majesty’s comfort, but Buckingham Palace has declined to comment.
The Queen last used a walking aid, aged 76, after having a knee operation. She left King Edward VII’s Hospital using a heavy-duty one and used a wooden one at a Sandringham church service two weeks later.
She was pictured using a walking stick a number of times over the following year but has not been seen to use one since recovering from the operation.
In 2018, it was reported that the Queen was still suffering from pain in her knees, but was unwilling to have further surgery due to the time off it would require.
Adjustments have been made to major events before to aid the Queen’s comfort. In 2016, she used a lift, rather than the 26-step royal staircase at the Sovereign’s Entrance, to enter parliament for the state opening.
Buckingham Palace said the “modest adjustment” to arrangements had been made for “the Queen’s comfort”.
The charity was founded on May 15, 1921, and brought together four national organizations established to care for military personnel and their families after the First World War.
It is also famous for its annual poppy appeal, which encourages public donations in return for the red flower worn in memory of the UK’s war dead.
Color Sergeant Johnson Beharry, who also gave a reading, said ahead of the service celebrating the charity’s centenary: “This is a landmark moment for the RBL and I am proud to be here to celebrate it.”
“The charity is very close to my heart,” he added. “For 100 years it has tackled the key issues facing the armed forces community that means so much to me, and I know they will continue supporting us long into the future.”
The Queen hasn’t worn the heavy Imperial State Crown since 2016 either, and it is instead placed upon a deep red and gold velvet cushion during ceremonies and events.