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The Queen has returned to royal duties, just a few days after the death of the Duke of Edinburgh, to mark the retirement of her household’s most senior official.

The monarch was back working on Tuesday holding her first in-person event since Philip’s passing on Friday, and hosted a ceremony as the Earl Peel formally stood down as Lord Chamberlain.

The holder of the title oversees all senior appointments in the household, is the channel of communication between the sovereign and the House of Lords and ensures co-ordination between Buckingham Palace and Clarence House.

The Earl Peel had also overseen arrangements for the duke’s funeral – known as Operation Forth Bridge – before handing responsibility to his successor, former MI5 spy chief Baron Parker, just over a week before Philip died peacefully at Windsor Castle.

The Queen recently conferred a prestigious honour on the Earl Peel, making him a Permanent Lord in Waiting.

The official engagement was recorded in the Court Circular – a daily list of the events attended by the Queen and her family. It said: “The Earl Peel had an audience of The Queen today, delivered up his Wand and Insignia of Office as Lord Chamberlain and the Badge of Chancellor of the Royal Victorian Order and took leave upon relinquishing his appointment as Lord Chamberlain, when Her Majesty invested him with the Royal Victorian Chain.”

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