The Queen commented on the rise of the Scottish National Party during an investiture ceremony, former Liberal Democrat MP Sir Simon Hughes said.
The former party deputy leader and coalition minister, who lost his Bermondsey and Old Southwark seat to Labour in May’s general election, said the Queen made the comment as she awarded him his knighthood for public and political service.
Sir Simon, who represented the London constituency for 32 years, said they had discussed the changes he had seen in politics over the decades.
He said: “Her Majesty asked me about the changes I have seen in parliament and obviously one of the things I said was that of course there are many more women now than when I was first elected.
“And she said ‘but also many more Scots’.”
Mr Hughes added: “No-one would have predicted a few years ago we would have 56 Scottish National Party MPs.”
It would appear Her Majesty had become confused on the matter of Scots and Scottish MPs as there remain 59 MPs from north of the Border in the House of Commons. However the SNP secured 56 of the 59 Scottish seats at Westminster in May’s election.