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King Charles kissed by well-wishers as he meets crowds lining street outside Buckingham Palace

The King and his Queen Consort, Camilla, were greeted with cheers of ‘God Save the King’ and smiling faces at Buckingham Palace

Joe Middleton
Friday 09 September 2022 16:39 BST
King Charles greets well-wishers outside Buckingham Palace

The nation’s new monarch King Charles III was kissed by well-wishers outside Buckingham Palace following the death of his mother the Queen.

The King and his Queen Consort, Camilla, exited the state Bentley as they approached the royal residence and were met with cheers of “God Save the King”, smiling faces and a sea of smartphones as Britons clamoured to capture his first encounter with the public since the death of his mother.

The King put on a brave face as he greeted the adoring crowds by shaking their hands and thanking them for their support in a time of national grieving.

One woman leaned over to kiss his right hand and another landed one on his cheek as Camilla followed at a distance behind him. She then joined him to view the large collection of brightly coloured floral bouquets left in tribute to his mother.

The King then turned to formal duties, despite his grief, as he held his first audience with prime minister Liz Truss ahead of delivering a televised address to a nation in mourning at 6pm on Friday.

Details of the King’s historic Accession Council, which will be held on Saturday at 10am in St James’s Palace, were announced by Buckingham Palace.

A well-wisher kisses the hand of King Charles III (PA Wire)

It will be televised for the first time in its history, showing the King being formally proclaimed monarch and him making his declaration and oath.

A Principal Proclamation will be read in public for the first time by the Garter King of Arms in the open air from the balcony overlooking Friary Court at St James’s an hour later at 11am.

A woman kissed the King on the cheek (BBC/PA)

It will be followed by a flurry of proclamations around the country, with the second one at the Royal Exchange, in London, at midday on Saturday, and others in Scotland, Northern Ireland and Wales at midday on Sunday.

Prince William, the Duke of Cornwall and Cambridge, is also travelling back to Windsor to be with his family ahead of the Accession Council, which he will attend.

King Charles III accepts a single rose from a member of the public (POOL/AFP via Getty Images)

Thousands of people have flocked to the Queen’s former homes of Buckingham Palace, Windsor Castle and Balmoral to pay their respects, leaving hundreds of bouquets, personal notes and candles in her honour.

The King has already turned his hand to his duties.

The new King and Queen greet the crowd at Buckingham Palace (EPA)

He gave the order that a period of “royal mourning” for the Queen will be observed from now until seven days after her funeral.

Royal mourning will be observed by members of the royal family, royal household staff and representatives of the royal household on official duties, together with troops committed to ceremonial duties.

The King shakes the hand of a person at Buckingham Palace (AFP via Getty Images)

Royal salutes were fired with one round for every year of the Queen’s life on Friday at 1pm in Hyde Park by the King’s Troop Royal Horse Artillery.

Thousands of people stood in solemn silence for 16 minutes as the cannons boomed once every 10 seconds, sending smoke across the grounds with each round, applauding as the spectacle came to an end.

Additional reporting by PA

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