King Charles III coronation details revealed by Palace
In less than two months’ time, the world will watch in awe as King Charles and Camilla, Queen Consort, are crowned in a formal ceremony, which will be conducted by the Archbishop of Canterbury, at Westminster Abbey on Saturday, May 6, 2023.
The historic occasion will be celebrated over the course of a three-day Bank Holiday weekend with numerous events, including a large concert and a nationwide volunteering scheme. A Palace press release, sent out a month after the Queen’s death, added: “The Coronation will reflect the monarch’s role today and look towards the future, while being rooted in longstanding traditions and pageantry.”
Here Express.co.uk looks at everything we know will take place to mark the King’s Coronation.
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When is King Charles III’s coronation?
Saturday, May 6 will be marked by the Coronation Service at Westminster Abbey. The day will start with the King and Queen Consort arriving at the Abbey in procession from Buckingham Palace, known as ‘The King’s Procession’.
The Coronation Service takes place and is expected to be about one hour – significantly shorter than Queen Elizabeth II’s which went on for more than three hours.
Once this has concluded, the King and Queen Consort will return to Buckingham Palace in a larger ceremonial procession, known as ‘The Coronation Process’. They will be joined by other members of the Royal Family, who will then appear beside Charles and Camilla on the Buckingham Palace Balcony to conclude the day’s events.
The line-up has yet to be released but it is expected to include immediate heirs to the throne and senior working royals. The Duke and Duchess of Sussex and Prince Andrew are unlikely to be invited onto the Balcony.
Coronations have been held at Westminster Abbey for 900 years but before Westminster Abbey was built, Coronations were carried out wherever was convenient.
The first coronation at Westminster Abbey was for William the Conqueror on December 25, 1066, with the most recent coronation being for Queen Elizabeth II on June 2, 1953.
The Queen’s coronation in 1953 was the first to be televised and was watched by 27 million people in the UK alone.
King Charles will become the 40th reigning monarch to be crowned in May 2023, and will be crowned alongside his Queen Consort, Camilla.
Full programme of events for the coronation weekend
Sunday, May 7 will be marked by a special Coronation Concert at Windsor Castle, featuring “global music icons and contemporary stars”. It will be attended by a public audience, including volunteers from Charles and Camilla’s charity affiliations.
The ticket ballot formally opened on Friday February 10, with 10,000 places up for grabs.
You can apply for a ticket by visiting the Coronation Concert website anytime until 2359hrs on Tuesday, 28th February.
Tickets will be allocated based on the geographical spread of the UK population and not on a first-come first-served basis, the Palace said.
The Palace said: “The concert will see a world-class orchestra play interpretations of musical favourites fronted by some of the world’s biggest entertainers, alongside performers from the world of dance. The performances will be supported by staging and effects located on the Castle’s East Lawn and will also feature a selection of spoken word sequences delivered by stars of stage and screen.”
The centrepiece of the night will include ‘Lighting up the Nation’ – a laser, drone and projection display across iconic UK locations.
The Coronation Concert will be produced by BBC Studios, broadcast live on BBC One, BBC iPlayer, BBC Radio 2 and BBC Sounds.
The coronation procession of George VI, 12 May 1937, in Westminster Abbey, London, England
Coronation Big Lunch
Neighbours and communities across the UK are invited to share food and fun together at Coronation Big Lunches. Thousands of events are expected to take place across the country.
The Coronation Big Lunch will be overseen and organised by the Big Lunch team at the Eden Project.
Monday, May 8 will be marked by the Big Help Out, which will highlight the positive impact volunteering has on communities across the nation.
Its aim is to use volunteering to bring communities together and create a lasting volunteering legacy from the Coronation Weekend.
Who will attend King Charles’s coronation?
The King will be joined by his wife, Queen Camilla for the service, with members of the Royal Family watching on. Prince William, Princess Kate and their three children will attend, as the next in line to the throne.
Charles’s brother Prince Edward and sister Princess Anne will also be in attendance with their spouses, as well as brother Prince Andrew – though he is unlikely top be allowed to wear his military uniform.
Prince Harry and his wife Meghan Markle have confirmed they have received an invitation to the Coronation but have not yet said whether they will attend.
A spokesman for the couple said: “I can confirm The Duke has recently received email correspondence from His Majesty’s office regarding the Coronation. An immediate decision on whether the Duke and Duchess will attend will not be disclosed by us at this time.”
As the service has been scheduled for May 6, the same day as their son Archie Harrison’s birthday. Experts have warned the issue of whether the Sussexes should attend could create a rift between Charles and William.
Prince Andrew is also likely to be there, though his ex-wife Sarah Ferguson recently revealed she had not been invited.
Camilla’s children and grandchildren are also set to be in attendance.
The palace has not yet said who will appear on the balcony.
Joe Biden is not expected to attend the King’s Coronation
But it’s not just British royals who have been invited, with dignitaries, foreign royals and world leaders also expected to attend.
US President Joe Biden has reportedly declined to attend, but will instead send a prominent delegation to go on his behalf.
Other heads of state to attend will include those from Ireland, France, Spain, Belgium, Japan, Hungary and Monaco. All three presidents of the EU – Ursula von der Leyen, Roberta Metsola and Charles Michel – will also be there.
Andrzej Duda, the Polish president, was the first head of state to be confirmed as attending the event, telling Prince William on his recent visit to the country.
Humza Yousaf, the new First Minister of Scotland, is set to go to the Coronation – despite declaring his Republican sentiments just weeks ago.
Only a handful of politicians are set to attend as the King attempts to reduce the number of people in attendance.
Members of the public will also be invited, including those from the King’s charity affiliations and some from the voluntary sector.
The Prince and Princess of Wales and their children will form part of the Coronation Procession
Which 15 royals will take part in the King’s Coronation procession?
The King’s Coronation procession will take place on the morning of May 6, and will see the King and Queen Consort accompanied by other royals as they travel to Westminster Abbey.
This part of the Coronation is confined to only senior members of the Royal Family, so it means Prince Harry and Meghan will not be involved.
Other non-working royals will also miss out, which includes the Duke of York and his children, Princess Eugenie and Princess Beatrice.
The Prince and Princess of Wales will form part of the procession, with their three children, Prince George, Princess Charlotte and Prince Louis joining them – much to the delight of royal fans, according to documents leaked to The Times.
Princess Anne and her husband Vice Admiral Sir Tim Laurence will also feature, as well as the new Duke and Duchess of Edinburgh, the Duke and Duchess of Gloucester and the Duke of Kent and his sister Princess Alexander.
Together with the King and Queen, this brings the total up to 15.
Elton John is understood to have declined performing at the Coronation Concert
Which musical legends have turned down performing at the Coronation Concert?
The organisers of the musical bonanza, the big Windsor Castle concert, appear to be struggling to book major headliners.
Musical icons Sir Elton John and the Spice Girls have become the latest stars to turn down performing at the event.
Harry Styles, Ed Sheeran, Adele and Robbie Williams are also understood to have declined due to their jam-packed schedules.
However, plenty more acts are likely to rise to the occasion and ensure it goes off without a glitch.
Will the coronation be a bank holiday?
As well as the official coronation service, dozens of events have been planned to mark the historic occasion. Because of this, the UK will have a public holiday on Monday, May 8 – two days after the coronation itself.
Queen Elizabeth II on her Coronation Day in 1953
What happens in the coronation?
The Royal website says: “During the ceremony, the Sovereign takes the coronation oath. The form and wording have varied over the centuries. Today, the Sovereign undertakes to rule according to law, to exercise justice with mercy – promises symbolised by the four swords in the coronation regalia (the Crown Jewels) – and to maintain the Church of England.
“The Sovereign is then “anointed, blessed and consecrated” by the Archbishop, whilst the Sovereign is seated in King Edward’s chair (made in 1300, and used by every Sovereign since 1626).
“After receiving the orb and sceptres, the Archbishop places St Edward’s Crown on the Sovereign’s head. After homage is paid by the Archbishop of Canterbury and senior peers, Holy Communion is celebrated.”
Details of the King’s Coronation
Harry and Meghan have been given notice on their Windsor home, Frogmore Cottage
Where will Harry and Meghan stay?
Last week it was revealed that Harry and Meghan have been asked to vacate Frogmore Cottage – their UK home.
The couple confirmed this was the case and they now have a timeline to clear out their belongings and hand the keys back to the Palace.
But reports suggest the Sussexes will not be expected to have left the property until the Autumn – which means they will be able to stay at Frogmore if they decide to return for the Coronation.
Will there be a coronation medal?
Royal tradition dictates that each monarch has a commemorative medal, which is given to select people along with members of the Royal Family to mark the coronation.
The Assay Offices of the UK announced a commemorative hallmark has been designed to celebrate the coronation of King Charles. The King’s Coronation Mark will be available from March 1 until December 31, 2024.
How can I watch the coronation?
The ceremony is likely to be broadcast live, just like his mother Queen Elizabeth II’s was. Some 27 million people in the UK and millions more around the world tuned in to watch the event.
Broadcast details have not been confirmed yet but you can expect to be able to watch the ceremony on BBC, Sky and ITV.