THE FORMER Prime Ministers of the UK watched on as Charles III was officially made King at St James' Palace today.
The six former PMs including Sir Tony Blair, Gordon Brown, Boris Johnson, David Cameron, Theresa May and Sir John Major all stood at the front of the packed room as Queen Consort Camilla and the current PM Liz Truss signed the Proclamation.
Reading the text of the proclamation, the clerk of the council declared to the room “God Save the King” and the packed room – including the six former leaders – repeated the famous phrase.
Her Majesty had 15 Prime Ministers during her record 70-year reign. Winston Churchill was her first and Liz Truss was her last, having only been sworn in at Balmoral just days before her death.
It comes as…
- The Queen's state funeral WILL be a bank holiday after King Charles today gave his approval
- Prince William has been seen for the first time since his grandmother's death
- One of the Queen’s last guests at Balmoral has told of his final poignant conversation with Her Majesty
- King Charles III paid tribute to his "darling Mama" in an emotional first address to the nation
- King Charles told Harry ‘it wasn’t right’ for Meghan to come to Balmoral
- King Charles III addressed the nation for the first time as monarch
Britain's constitutional monarchy places great importance on the relationship between the Crown and the government.
During her reign the Queen officially appointed her premiers and summoned them for regular audiences to discuss matters of state.
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But beyond the formalities she also found affection for her prime ministers, inviting them to join her on holiday and swapping stories.
Following tradition, the new King was missing from proceedings and did not witness senior figures from national life taking part in the ceremony.
Following the council, Charles entered the throne room as he announced his mother's death and vowed to follow her "inspiring example".
Charles added: "I know how deeply you and the entire nation, and I think I may say the whole world, sympathise with me in this irreparable loss we have all suffered.”
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Prince William then signed the proclamation in an emotional moment with his father.
Broadcast cameras were allowed into the historic event giving the world a first glimpse of an ancient ceremony dating back centuries – and one of the first changes to convention instigated by the new King.
After the meeting PM Truss and other party leaders have taken the oath of allegiance to the new King as Parliament met for a rare Saturday sitting.
A select group of senior MPs were given the chance to formally pledge their loyalty to Charles at the Commons despatch box ahead of the second day of tributes to the Queen.
It comes as Boris Johnson yesterday revealed he had to stop recording his PM obituary of the Queen as he was too "choked up", he revealed in the Commons today.
The former PM paid a moving tribute to "Elizabeth the Great", who he saw for the last time only on Tuesday at Balmoral.
THE NEW KING
Charles had automatically become King following the tragic death of his mother on Thursday but his role has now been confirmed.
He waved to cheering crowds as he returned to Buckingham Palace today after being formally made King in a landmark ceremony.
Earlier this morning, gun salutes and trumpets sounded across the country to usher in the historic moment he was made Monarch.
He was later pictured driving past the rapturous crowds at Buckingham Palace after the pomp and pageantry.
It came after the first-ever televised Accession Ceremony at St James' Palace where the King vowed to follow the Queen's "inspiring example".
Flanked by Prince William and Queen Camilla, he said: "I know how deeply you, the entire Nation – and I think I may say the whole world – sympathise with me in the irreparable loss we have all suffered.
"It is the greatest consolation to me to know of the sympathy expressed by so many to my Sister and Brothers and that such overwhelming affection and support should be extended to our whole family in our loss.
"To all of us as a family, as to this kingdom and the wider family of nations of which it is a part, my Mother gave an example of lifelong love and of selfless service.
"My Mother’s reign was unequalled in its duration, its dedication and its devotion. Even as we grieve, we give thanks for this most faithful life."
King Charles also approved an order that the day of the Queen's funeral, which is yet to be decided, will be a Bank Holiday.
He continued: "I take this opportunity to confirm my willingness and intention to continue the tradition of surrendering the hereditary revenues, including the Crown Estate, to my Government for the benefit of all, in return for the Sovereign Grant, which supports my official duties as Head of State and Head of Nation.
"And in carrying out the heavy task that has been laid upon me, and to which I now dedicate what remains to me of my life, I pray for the guidance and help of Almighty God."
At 11am, the Principal Proclamation of the King was given by the Garter King of Arms from the balcony above Friary Court.
He ended the declaration "God save the King" as history was made.
The Band of the Coldstream Guards and State Trumpeters of the Household Cavalry then played the newly-revised anthem.
Three cheers were also given for the new monarch as trumpeters sounded the fanfare.
Smoke also filled the air as 41 guns were fired from Hyde Park and 62 at the Tower of London in a stunning salute.
There were also gun salutes at Cardiff Castle, Edinburgh Castle, Gibraltar, Colchester, York, Larkhill near Stonehenge, naval bases in Devonport and Portsmouth and a number of stations at sea.
Flags lowered in mourning for the Queen will fly at full-mast again after the ceremony.
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Further proclamations were also given today – including in the City of London.
The guards made their way through the capital to deliver the second declaration in front of the Royal Exchange.
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