King Charles And Camilla, Queen Consort Greet Well-Wishers En Route To Sunday Church Service In Balmoral

·9 min read
Photo credit: Tim Graham - Getty Images
Photo credit: Tim Graham - Getty Images

The Queen's funeral took place on Monday, September 19 at Westminster Abbey, uniting the royal family for a heartfelt send off for the late Monarch.

The day paid tribute to the Queen's 'extraordinary reign and Her Majesty’s remarkable life of service as Head of State, Nation and Commonwealth', as per the Royal Family's official website.

Ahead of the service and amid the national mourning period for Her Majesty, King Charles III gave his first televised address to the nation as the new monarch. At the time, he paid tribute to his children and their spouses, hinting what the future holds for them, and for himself and Camilla.

'This is also a time of change for my family,' he began. 'I count on the loving help of my darling wife Camilla in recognition of her own loyal public service since our marriage 17 years ago. She becomes my Queen Consort. I know she will bring to the demands of her new role, the steadfast devotion to duty on which I have come to rely so much.'

Photo credit: Samir Hussein - Getty Images
Photo credit: Samir Hussein - Getty Images

Referring to Prince William and Kate Middleton, he said: 'As my heir, William assumes the Scottish titles which have meant so much to me, he succeeds me as Duke of Cornwall and takes on the responsibilities for the Duchy of Cornwall which I have undertaken for more than five decades. '

He added: 'With Catherine beside him, our new Prince and Princess of Wales I know will continue to inspire and lead our national conversations, helping to bring the marshal to the centre ground where vital help can be given.'

The King also said of Prince Harry and Meghan Markle: 'I want also to express my love for Harry and Meghan as they continue to build their lives overseas.'

With the Queen's State Funeral now over and mourners looking ahead to the King's coronation, here's what the royal family's plans are in the days and months to come:

Prince Harry and Meghan Markle

The Duke and Duchess of Sussex, who live in Montecito, California, initially flew into the UK on September 3 for a series of public engagements such as the WellChild Awards and the One Young World summit.

Of course, Her Majesty's death happened unexpectedly days after their arrival. As a result, the duchess cancelled high-profile appearances including a gala to celebrate Variety magazine's new 'Power of Women' issue, for which Markle was the cover star (the event has been postponed out of respect for the Queen).

The couple have since left the UK, after reportedly flying out from London Heathrow on Tuesday, September 20.

They have now been reunited with their two children, Archie, three, and Lilibet, one, who remained in the US while the Queen's mourning period and funeral took place.

Photo credit: WPA Pool - Getty Images
Photo credit: WPA Pool - Getty Images

Prince Harry and Markle's extended stay in the UK saw them meet with many members of the royal family, including their in-laws, Prince William and Middleton.

Both couples surprised mourners at Windsor Castle on September 10, when viewing tributes left for the Queen by members of the public.

Prince William and Kate Middleton (the new Prince and Princess of Wales)

As Prince William adapts to his new title of the Prince of Wales, formerly belonging to his father - the newly appointed King Charles III - the 40-year-old and his wife are also settling into life in their new Windsor home, Adelaide Cottage.

Following his grandmother's funeral, the prince shared a heartfelt pre-recorded message on Wednesday, September 21 about cancelling his appearance at the Earthshot Prize Innovation Summit in New York City.

The father-of-three and heir to the throne said: 'Although it is the saddest of circumstances that means I cannot join you in person today, I am pleased to be able to join you in video form as you gather in New York for the Earthshot Prize Innovation Summit.

'During this time of grief, I take great comfort in your continued enthusiasm, optimism and commitment to The Earthshot Prize and what we are trying to achieve.'

Photo credit: WPA Pool - Getty Images
Photo credit: WPA Pool - Getty Images

Honouring the late Queen, he continued: 'Protecting the environment was a cause close to my grandmother's heart, and I know she would have been delighted to hear about this event and the support you are all giving our Earthshot Finalists – the next generation of environmental pioneers.'

He shared his message ahead of the Earthshot Prize finals, scheduled for December. The Prince and Princess of Wales are due to visit Boston to announce the second annual cohort of Earthshot Prize winners.

He concluded his speech by saying he and Middleton 'are so excited to be coming to Boston in December', adding: 'We look forward to seeing you all very soon.'

The Earthshot Prize is global accolade for the environment, to incentivise change and help to repair our planet over the next 10 years.

Photo credit: PHIL NOBLE - Getty Images
Photo credit: PHIL NOBLE - Getty Images

Prince William and Middleton, who notably want their kids - Prince George, nine, Princess Charlotte, seven, and Prince Louis, four - to have as normal a life as possible, enrolled their the trio into Lambrook School near Ascot in Berkshire earlier this summer.

King Charles and Camilla, Queen Consort

King Charles and Camilla, Queen Consort attended church on October 2, for the first time since the seven-day period of private mourning for the Queen ended on September 26.

The royal couple smiled and waved at well-wishers on their morning route to Crathie Church in Balmoral.

King Charles looked at ease, dressed in a classic checked suit with a green and red tie, while Camilla wore a navy coat with a tartan collar and feathered red beret.

Their church appearance came a day after it was reported King Charles is hoping to turn Balmoral into a public memorial to the Queen by opening it up to more visitors this year.

As per the Daily Mail, the new plans would enable members of the public to visit even whilst the King is in residence.

It's expected to be open to the public from October to December with no fees or guided tours to the castle 'as a mark of respect' to Her Majesty.

Photo credit: Tim Graham - Getty Images
Photo credit: Tim Graham - Getty Images

The same news outlet reported 'visitors will be able to visit the grounds and gardens, where they can enjoy the peace and tranquility of this special place and pay their respects to Queen Elizabeth II'.

However, the royal family are understood to be continuing the tradition of visiting their Aberdeenshire estate during summer, so Balmoral would temporarily close to the public during this period.

On September 27, King Charles announced the royal mourning period for the Queen had ended.

To declare the news, the royal shared a portrait photograph of the Queen, taken by Dorothy Wilding on 26 February, 1952, 20 days after her accession to the throne, on the Royal Family Twitter account with the caption: 'The period of Royal Mourning following the death of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth has now ended.

'This account will continue to reflect the work of The King, The Queen Consort and other members of The Royal Family, as well as remembering the life and work of Queen Elizabeth. [sic]'

As for what's next for King Charles, his coronation is yet to be announced, but royal biographer Hugo Vickers said we should know a date soon.

Speaking on ITV's Good Morning Britain on Tuesday, September 20, Vickers, author of biographies for many 20th century figures, including the Queen Mother, said he expects it to take place in spring or summer next year

It's also predicted that the King will introduce a 'slimmed down' monarchy, meaning there could be less working members of the royal family. Prince Harry and Markle stepped back as senior members of the family in March 2020.

According to Vickers, the newly-appointed monarch coronation is due to be shorter and smaller than the Queen's in 1953.

Photo credit: Dan Kitwood - Getty Images
Photo credit: Dan Kitwood - Getty Images

'The King is very aware of the struggles felt by modern Britons so will see his wishes carried through that although his coronation ceremony should stay right and true to the long held traditions of the past, it should also be representative of a monarchy in a modern world,' a source told the news outlet.

It's also believed his ceremony 'will be shorter, sooner, smaller, less expensive and more representative of different community groups and faiths'.

In addition, the guest list could be limited to 2,000 people, with Commonwealth leaders and a range of religions 'prioritised among the congregation'.

As per the Telegraph, the King is also expected to visit France for his first overseas trip as sovereign, and rather than visit one of the Commonwealth countries, it's likely he may head to Paris 'as soon as next month' as part of a tour.

Monarchs typically make state trips to members of the Commonwealth.

Photo credit: Max Mumby/Indigo - Getty Images
Photo credit: Max Mumby/Indigo - Getty Images

The Queen, however, struggled to travel during the final years of her 70-year reign, with no state visits conducted by the monarch for the past seven years.

Visiting France will allow the King to work on a major tree-planting scheme in Africa, designed to combat climate change. The Great Green Wall project, focused on planting trees across 30 miles of the African continent, could also be held during his visit.

Plans for the King's foreign visit aren't confirmed, but it's been reported he will visit a neighbouring country ahead of long-haul trip to a Commonwealth country.

At the time of the Queen's death, France's president Emmanuel Macron wrote: 'The United Kingdom will forever bear the seal of she who embodied it for seventy years with unwavering strength and moral authority. France pays tribute to she who marked the History of her country, our continent and her century.'

He added: 'She held a special status in France and a special place in the hearts of the French people. No foreign sovereign has climbed the stairs of the Elysée Palace more often than she, who honoured France with six state visits and met each of its presidents. For her, French was not a mere relic of Norman ancestry that persisted in so many customs, but an intimate, cherished language.

Photo credit: WPA Pool - Getty Images
Photo credit: WPA Pool - Getty Images

'The Queen of sixteen kingdoms loved France, which loved her back. This evening, the people of the United Kingdom and the Commonwealth are mourning their Queen. The people of France join them in their grief.'

King Charles and Camilla flew to Scotland a day after the Queen's funeral.

The royal family remained in mourning for a week after the funeral, honouring the wish of the King, which he expressed soon after her death. Members of the Royal Household Staff, related representatives and troops on ceremonial duties honoured this grieving period.

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