Queen Elizabeth to Break With Tradition and Appoint New Prime Minister While in Scotland Amid Mobility Issues

It'll be the first time in her 70-year reign when the appointment will not take place at Buckingham Palace.

When Queen Elizabeth II appoints the United Kingdom's next prime minister while in Scotland, it will mark the first time in her 70-year reign that the appointment will happen outside of Buckingham Palace.

A Palace source tells ET that Her Majesty will meet with outgoing Prime Minister Boris Johnson next Tuesday at Balmoral, her castle in Scotland. She will then meet with the new prime minister shortly thereafter, also at Balmoral. The source added that the queen's mobility issues are keeping her in Balmoral for now. She has been using a cane and the royal household is making sure she remains comfortable given her health issues.

The queen is undoubtedly breaking with tradition when she meets the new prime minister at Balmoral. During her reign, Queen Elizabeth, 96, has appointed all 14 prime ministers from Buckingham Palace. But, given her health issues, it's less of a toll for the queen to remain at Balmoral -- where she's on her summer break -- rather than embark on a 515-mile one-way trip to Buckingham Palace for the traditional appointment that's known as "kissing hands."

As for who the queen will appoint as the next prime minister is yet to be determined, as the ruling party will soon vote between Foreign Secretary Liz Truss and former Finance Minister Rishi Sunak.

It's not the first time mobility issues have impacted the queen's plans and how she carries out her duties. Back in July, ET confirmed that she entrusted more of her monarch duties to her son, Prince Charles.

Her Majesty’s "official duties" were outlined in the Palace’s annual Sovereign Grant report, and the list of duties she "must fulfill" had been removed to lighten the queen’s workload. 

Prince Charles, the future king, has been standing in for his mother as she continues to deal with "episodic mobility issues." Prince William, the second in line to the throne, is also expected to undertake more duties on behalf of his grandmother.

During her Platinum Jubilee celebrations, Queen Elizabeth sat out for several events, after experiencing "some discomfort" at the Trooping the Colour

She did, however, make a surprise appearance to close out the four-day-long festivities, which were held to mark her 70 years on the throne. Weeks later, Queen Elizabeth appeared in public once again, stepping out in Edinburgh, Scotland, amid Holyrood Week.