An unprecedented "mini" version of the Queen's official birthday parade is set to take place

By Simon Perry
June 03, 2020 10:11 AM
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Queen Elizabeth will enjoy a small-scale ceremony to mark her official birthday later this month after all.

The occasion will replace the grand Trooping the Colour parade and fly-past over Buckingham Palace that was canceled due to the unprecedented lockdown and social distancing rules in place since the coronavirus pandemic.

Buckingham Palace now confirms that a military salute will take place on June 13 at Windsor Castle, where she has been isolating with husband Prince Philip since March 19.

“There will be a small, brief military ceremony at Windsor Castle to mark The Queen’s official birthday," a Buckingham Palace spokesman tells PEOPLE.

Trooping the Colour 2019
Chris Jackson/Getty

Details are still being worked out by her aides and it is not yet known whether any of her family, including son Prince Charles, 71, and grandson Prince William, 37, and his wife Kate Middleton, 38, and their children will be able to join her in a socially-distanced manner on the grounds of the castle.

Trooping the Colour 2018

According to the Daily Mail, the ceremony will be led by a small contingent of the Welsh Guards and there will be a salute at 11 a.m. – as would have happened at the traditional Trooping the Colour. It’s likely that the ceremony would be watched from the castle windows and there wouldn’t be a stand or viewing platforms. Trooping the Colour typically sees hundreds of soldiers parading on what is the monarch's official birthday (her real birthday is in April).

It will be a brief boost for the Queen, 94, who has had to cancel many of her favorite springtime events — like her garden parties at Buckingham Palace — because of the crisis.

Queen Elizabeth rides her horse on the grounds of Windsor Castle
Steve Parsons - WPA Pool/Getty Images

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Media arrangements for the military salute at Windsor Castle on June 13 are still be organized, but it is likely to be broadcast by the BBC.

The Queen – who has kept up with her duties as much as possible, talking with Prime Minister Boris Johnson and her Privy Council by phone — has also tried to stay as active as possible by riding her horses. This week, the palace allowed a photographer to capture her riding 14-year-old horse Fern on the grounds of the castle.