King and Queen thank hundreds of people involved in their historic coronation

King and Queen thank hundreds of people involved in their historic coronation
The King attends a reception to thank those involved (Nicky J Sims/PA)
PA Wire/PA Images - Nicky J Sims

The King and Queen have thanked hundreds of people involved in their historic coronation – with one guest revealing Charles wanted to be closer to the celebratory concert.

Charles and Camilla invited representatives from across government, the Church of England, creative arts, volunteers and policing involved in the historic day to Buckingham Palace.

Others who helped plan and run Queen Elizabeth’s funeral were also invited and personally thanked by Charles and Camilla at the event attended by the Princess Royal and the Duke and Duchess of Edinburgh.

King Charles III coronationTake That perform on stage at the Coronation Concert (Chris Jackson/PA)PA Wire/PA Images - Chris Jackson

The King and Queen were crowned during a glittering ceremony staged at Westminster Abbey on May 6, and the following day a concert was staged in the grounds of Windsor Castle with performances from an array of stars from Olly Murs and Lionel Richie to Paloma Faith and Take That.

Neil Walter, who was in charge of parking for the Royal Borough of Windsor and Maidenhead, said the King told him how he was seated so far from the concert stage he could not see what was happening on the stage

The official added: “He said next time he would like to be closer – or bring his binoculars.”

Another guest, Claire Popplewell creative director, BBC Studios – who helped oversee the broadcast of the coronation and concert, said: “The whole team rose to the occasion on the day, they are moments in history, amazing history.

“We were there to do the ceremonial, which is what it’s all about, but then to have the party and the concert afterwards and to be such a success was very special.”

King Charles III coronationDuring the coronation ceremony, Penny Mordaunt carried the the Sword of State (Richard Pohle/The Times)PA Wire/PA Images - Richard Pohle/The Times

Among the guests at the event were royal florist Shane Connolly, who provided the blooms for the Westminster Abbey Coronation and Bruce Oldfield, the designer behind Queen Camilla’s coronation gown.

Broadcaster Clare Balding, who provided the BBC commentary for the coronation processions to and from Westminster, recalled a slight faux pas during her presentation.

She said: “I managed to say – which is a perfectly acceptable horsey phrase – that the Princess Royal had been very quickly mounted, and joined the procession. I didn’t bat an eyelid at that.

“I didn’t even realise. When I got home, my partner Alice said, ‘You seem to have caused a bit of a stir.’ But that’s just the sort of thing that would make them all laugh.”

The Abbey was festooned with blooms sourced from the UK by Mr Connolly, who was the florist for the Queen’s wedding to Charles in 2005 and created the floral displays for the funerals of her father and brother.

Royal Wedding plansFlorist Shane Connolly (Paul Rogers/The Times)PA Archive/PA Images - Paul Rogers/The Times

He said about the King and Queen’s reaction to the coronation flowers: “They loved them and they appreciated every single stem and the fact that it was given by British growers and British gardeners…I think it meant the world to them.

“And really one of the few things in the Abbey which was about them as people were the flowers, so they were incredibly pleased.”

Among the guest was Penny Mordaunt, who as Lord President of the Privy Council generated huge interest on social media when she carried the Sword of State during the coronation ceremony.

Asked about the attention her role received, she replied: “I think that was what was so wonderful about the event, you had all this incredible pageantry and you really felt the history and the heritage of it all, but it was a modern service for a modern monarchy.

“And it was great to see so many women, so many diverse people represented in that procession and I was one of them, and I was just very proud to be there as his first Lord President and the first women to do that role.”

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