Charles III was formally proclaimed King of of the United Kingdom and fourteen other Commonwealth realms at a historic ceremony at St. James’s Palace in London on Saturday morning.
Crowds of people gathered at the barriers ahead of the formal ceremony, known as the Accession Council, which began at 10 a.m. BST to proclaim the late Queen Elizabeth II’s first-born son, Charles, King.
Six former Prime Ministers of the United Kingdom attended the ceremony, as King Charles III became the oldest monarch in British history to ascend to the throne.
This was the first time that the Accession Council was televised.
Gun salutes were to be fired in Hyde Park, the Tower of London, and from naval ships, and the proclamation announcing Charles as the King was read in Edinburgh, Cardiff, and Belfast.
Further public proclamations were to take place from a balcony at St. James’s Palace and the City of London.
Afterwards, senior members of government will take an oath to King Charles III in the House of Commons.
According to an official announcement of his schedule, King Charles III will speak with the Archbishop of Canterbury at Buckingham Palace at 2 p.m. followed by a meeting with Prime Minister Liz Truss and cabinet members and leaders of opposition parties.
At 4 p.m., the King will also meet the Dean of Westminster at Buckingham Palace.
King Charles III’s first public address
In his emotional first address to the public, the new King, Charles III, promised to serve the nation with the same “unswerving devotion” as the late Queen had during her seventy-year reign.
Queen Elizabeth II was the UK’s longest-serving monarch and died at Balmoral in Scotland at age ninety-six after reigning for seventy years. Her platinum jubilee was celebrated in June.
Charles became King the moment his mother died under an old law that ensures Britain always has a monarch.
Although it may be several months before a new monarch is crowned, the formal process of the proclamation begins within the first twenty-four hours of the previous monarch’s death.
King Charles III, formerly known as the Prince of Wales, was born in 1948 and became heir apparent on the accession of Queen Elizabeth II in 1952.
In addition to his official and ceremonial duties in the United Kingdom and overseas as the Prince of Wales, the new British King has taken “a keen and active interest in all areas of public life for decades and [has] been instrumental in establishing more than [twenty] charities over [forty] years,” his official biography states.
As he worked closely with many organizations, King Charles III publicly supported a wide variety of causes relating to the environment, rural communities, the arts, healthcare, and education.
King Charles is also a staunch Philhellene and has recently visited Greece several times.
In his 2018 visit to Greece, he hailed the close ties between the UK and Greece and highlighted Greece’s role in the world by saying: “We are all Greeks. Our laws, our literature, our religion, our arts have their root in Greece.”