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Royal Family Celebrates King Charles’s Official Birthday

Britain’s King Charles III marked his first Trooping the Colour as sovereign with a Buckingham Palace balcony appearance, where Prince Louis stole the limelight once again. The king and his wife, Camilla, were surrounded by the royal family, including Prince William, Kate, Prince George, Princess Charlotte, and Louis. The Princess Royal, and her husband, Vice Admiral Sir Tim Laurence, also joined the balcony appearance, alongside the Duke and Duchess of Edinburgh, the Duke and Duchess of Gloucester, and the Duke of Kent.

The day saw many milestones, as the king became the first monarch in over 30 years to ride a horse during Trooping the Colour. The ceremony also marked the first time in five decades that all five regiments of Foot Guards had gathered to celebrate the sovereign’s official birthday. The queen, Colonel of the Grenadier Guards, and the Princess of Wales, the Irish Guards’ Colonel, wore their regimental brooches and dressed in outfits that paid homage to their military associations.

Camilla and Kate were given prominent new roles during Trooping, no longer just spectators. They rode in a carriage, a symbolic image of the royal family uniting to support the king as he completed his first Trooping. The king and his wife also accompanied the royal family on a carriage procession, where Prince Louis seemed to pretend to ride a motorcycle or bike with his arms outstretched and covered his ears as planes roared overhead.

During the ceremony, Charles inspected the lines of guardsmen on the parade ground, casting a critical eye over the soldiers. He was surrounded by royal colonels, including Prince William, Anne, and Edward, while Camilla and Kate travelled in a carriage. The queen and the Princess of Wales wore colours associated with their regiments, and the royal family watched the march past of the troops from a dais.

King Charles III

The ceremony was also attended by over 8,000 wives, girlfriends, and parents of the guardsmen and officers on parade, who had camped out overnight to get a prime vantage spot. The ceremony was watched by 250,000 people, with 8,000 tickets available for the ceremony staged in Horse Guards. The event saw the colours of the five regiments of Foot Guards trooped through the ranks of soldiers, and a 41-gun salute was fired from Green Park by the King’s Troop Royal Horse Artillery to mark the king’s official birthday.

The ceremony also included a 62-volley salute from the Honourable Artillery Company and a fly-past of 18 Typhoon fighter jets spelling out the King’s monogram “CR” for Charles Rex. The event also featured famous planes associated with the Second World War, including Spitfire and Hurricane fighters with a Lancaster bomber, all from the Battle of Britain Memorial Flight. As the planes roared overhead, Kate encouraged Prince George to wave to the crowds and smoothed down Prince Louis’ hair, ushering him to turn around and face the spectators. The finale was precision formation flying from the Red Arrows, who trailed red, white, and blue smoke over the capital.

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