THE First Minister has met with the Queen in Edinburgh after announcing her “route map” to a Scottish independence referendum.

Nicola Sturgeon spoke with Queen Elizabeth at the Palace of Holyroodhouse after confirming that she intends to hold indyref2 on October 19, 2023.

If the Supreme Court, which is currently looking at the proposals for a consultative referendum, says it is outwith Holyrood’s powers to go ahead with a ballot, the First Minister will use the next General Election as a de-facto referendum.

The Queen was seen smiling next to Sturgeon as the pair posed for photos before talking privately.

The National:

The National:

The Queen is currently in Scotland for a week, alongside her children – but Prince Andrew has not been invited on the traditional trip.

Ahead of a garden party, the First Minister presented the Queen with a bottle of limited edition Johnnie Walker whisky, and specially made tartan.

READ MORE: Government memo reveals Queen's secret influence on Scottish laws

It emerged in a Guardian article earlier that “it is almost certain” that proposed Holyrood laws have secretly been changed to secure approval from the Queen.

Through a constitutional mechanism called “Queen’s Consent”, the monarch is given an opportunity to look over prospective laws that could affect her property and public powers.

Previous reports have revealed that there had been 67 instances where the procedure had allowed the Queen to vet draft laws in Holyrood.

A memo obtained by The Guardian revealed the first explicit admission that Crown Consent can be used to alter legislation to assuage concerns of the Queen.

READ MORE: UK Government in news blackout after Nicola Sturgeon announcement

On Tuesday the Queen met with members of the armed forces during an act of loyalty parade in the city.

The parade centred on the presentation of the key for Edinburgh Castle as part of the royal visit tradition and meeting with members of the services.

The Major General addressed the Queen, saying: “We, the serving members of Your Majesty’s Armed Forces, bound by our oath to You, your Heirs and Successors, offer for Your gracious acceptance the Key to Your Majesty’s Royal Castle of Edinburgh.”

To which she responded: “I return this key to the safekeeping of My Governor of Edinburgh Castle, in gratitude for the symbolic Act of Loyalty of Our Armed Forces, confident of your faithful allegiance to your oath.”

Three cheers for the Queen were then given by members of the armed forces before a pipe tune composed for the Platinum Jubilee called Dieu Ragnari was played as she waved goodbye and returned to the palace.