Her Majesty The Queen is to address the new session of the Scottish Parliament on Saturday 2nd July, it has been announced.
The Fifth Session of the Scottish Parliament (2016-2021) will be marked on 2 July in a ceremony and day of events that will continue the Scottish tradition of bringing together the people, the Parliament and Her Majesty The Queen.
The day will commence with a procession of the Crown of Scotland down the Royal Mile to Holyrood.
An address by her Majesty The Queen to Members of the Scottish Parliament and invited guests will follow in the Debating Chamber.
And a ‘riding’ down the Royal Mile to Holyrood will take place, continuing the centuries-old Scots tradition of the people processing to the Parliament. The Session Five Riding will involve around 2,000 people, selected to highlight achievements across every constituency and region in Scotland.
In the afternoon the Scottish Parliament will open its doors to guests and members of the public with an open afternoon of Scottish culture, music, dance and drama.
Presiding Officer the Rt Hon Tricia Marwick said:
“As we look beyond the coming election to the start of the Fifth Session of the Scottish Parliament, it is right that, once again, the people of Scotland are placed at the heart our events.
“For a young, modern parliament we are fortunate to have centuries of culture and tradition to draw upon as we bring together the people, the Parliament and Her Majesty The Queen.”
Further details of the programme will be announced in May after the election.
The current five-year parliamentary session draws to a close at midnight on Wednesday 23 March and ‘dissolution’ begins immediately thereafter on Thursday 24 March 2016.
Under Parliament’s Standing Orders and following consultation with party leaders, the Presiding Officer has announced the first meeting of the new parliamentary session will be on Thursday 12 May 2016.
As with previous sessions, an ecumenical ‘Kirking of the Parliament’ will take place on the eve of the first sitting of the new Parliament. Session Five’s kirking will be held on Wednesday 11 May in St Giles’ Cathedral.
Her Majesty the Queen will address the Fifth Session of the Scottish Parliament on Saturday 2 July, during Royal Week in Scotland.
Media access details will be announced after the election.