According to a Buckingham Palace announcement released Wednesday, Queen Elizabeth II will for the first time in her historic 70-year reign appoint the new prime minister at Balmoral, in Scotland, due to mobility issues affecting the monarch.
Whoever is elected between Liz Truss and Rishi Sunak, as well as the departing Boris Johnson, are to travel for the ceremony on Sept. 6.
Appointing the prime minister is one of the head of state's key duties, one she would rather not delegate to her son and future King Prince Charles, who has increasingly taken over other royal functions in recent months.
A spokesperson for Buckingham Palace explained the 96-year-old monarch will not be making the 1,000-mile trip to London or Windsor as a precaution, considering some health problems in recent months which, if they were to inconveniently appear shortly before the ceremony and the Queen became unable to travel, last-minute arrangements would be needed.
Johnson will travel to Balmoral Castle to formally tender his resignation Tuesday. Whoever is elected to become his replacement will be asked by the queen on the same day to form a new government.
Elizabeth II, who celebrated her Platinum Jubilee this year, has been seen using a walking stick regularly.
“I don’t talk about my conversations with the queen, no prime minister ever does. But I can tell you that we will certainly make sure that the arrangements for the handover will fit totally around her and whatever she wants,” Johnson told reporters Wednesday.
The queen has been served by 14 prime ministers during her reign, from Winston Churchill in the 1950s to Johnson.