(ABC4) – For the first time in six decades, Queen Elizabeth did not attend the opening of Parliament.

The Buckingham Palace announced on Tuesday that she reluctantly made the decision due to her mobility issues.

The 96-year-old queen has missed a number of engagements recently, and while the palace won’t go into detail, she reportedly finds it difficult to walk or stand for long periods of time.

The queen’s absence marks only the third time that she hasn’t attended the opening, the previous two being when she was pregnant.

Meanwhile, Prince Charles stepped in to deliver the monarch’s speech, formally opening the new session of Parliament.