Charles’ new day of destiny as Scotland honours its King: Monarch is presented with ancient symbols of power in historic thanksgiving service before he watches flypast stood side by side with Camilla, Kate and William
King Charles was presented with the crown jewels of Scotland in a historic thanksgiving serving today before he and Queen Camilla stood side by side with the Prince and Princess of Wales to watch a Red Arrows flypast.
The monarch received the Crown of Scotland, the Sceptre and the Sword of State of the Honours of Scotland – the country’s crown jewels – at St Giles’ Cathedral in Edinburgh eight weeks after his crowning at Westminster Abbey.
William and Catherine, known as the Duke and Duchess of Rothesay north of the border, joined Scotland’s leading figures and 100 individuals from all walks of society at the church on the Royal Mile.
The Right Reverend Sally Foster-Fulton, Moderator of the General Assembly of the Church of Scotland, delivered the sermon, in which she called for action to tackle global warming to stop the world ‘baking to a crisp’.
A 21-gun salute rang out across the Scottish capital following the historic ceremony, before nine planes left trails of red, white and blue as the royals watched from the Palace of Holyroodhouse.
During the processions activists loudly booed and shouted ‘Not My King’ from a protest spot yards from the Royal Mile – leading to criticism from royalists who believe they should have been given a less prominent location.
Two women, 20 and 21, were arrested after allegedly trying to climb over a crowd safety barrier during the event and charged with a breach of the peace.
Queen Camilla, King Charles III, the Prince and Princess of Wales, watch a Red Arrows flypast at the Palace of Holyroodhouse following a service of thanksgiving
The King and Queen posed for a photo with the Prince and Princess of Wales at the Palace of Holyroodhouse
King Charles is presented with the Crown of Scotland during his Scottish Coronation at St Giles’ Cathedral in Edinburgh watched by his wife, Queen Camilla, and the Prince and Princess of Wales
Princess Anne at the Palace of Holyroodhouse in Edinburgh this afternoon
What are the Honours of Scotland?
Consisting of the priceless crown, sceptre and Sword of State, the Honours of Scotland were first used together at a Coronation in 1543 for Mary, Queen of Scots when she was just nine months old.
They were later used to crown her son, James VI – who went on to become James I of England – in 1567, Charles I in 1633 and Charles II in 1651. The Crown of Scotland, the impressive centrepiece of the collection, was placed on the coffin of the late Queen during a moving service at St Giles’ Cathedral after her death last year.
It features a circlet made of Scottish gold with 22 gemstones, 20 precious stones including diamonds and amethysts and freshwater pearls from Scottish rivers. Four gold arches rise to an orb which is painted blue and decorated with stars and a gold cross sits on top, which is studded with a large amethyst and eight pearls.
Made of solid silver, the sceptre was a gift from Pope Alexander VI to James IV in 1494. It was re-modelled and lengthened in 1536 and has small figures of the Virgin and Child, St James and St Andrew as well as a polished globe of rock crystal.
The Sword of State was also a papal gift from Pope Julius II to James IV in 1507 and the blade features figures of St Peter and St Paul and Pope Julius’s inscription. The silver-gilt handle is decorated with oak leaves and acorns to symbolise the risen Christ and the scabbard is made of wood covered in dark red velvet and mounted with silver gilt.
Scotland’s crown jewels have not had a smooth or easy journey to their present-day display cabinet at Edinburgh Castle. In mid-17th century, the hoard had to be hidden from Oliver Cromwell – who had already melted down the English Crown Jewels – and they were taken to Dunnottar Castle in Aberdeenshire before being buried in a nearby church.
For the service, the Princess of Wales wore a Catherine Walker coat, hat by Philip Treacy and a necklace from the late Queen’s collection, while her husband was dressed in his RAF No1 uniform.
In a touching moment, the pair were seen joking with each other as the service got underway.
Delivering the sermon, the Right-Reverend Foster-Fulton told the congregation that society will be on the ‘right track’ if we understand that ‘the Heavens and Earth’ are not ‘human commodities or possessions’.
‘Blessed are we, on the right track are we when we understand that our children do not inherit this Earth from us – we have borrowed it from them,’ she said.
‘And it is our duty to return it still singing and surging and bathing, not baking to a crisp.’
Charles spoke extensively before becoming King about the importance of the environment, tackling climate change and protecting wildlife.
He runs his Aston Martin sportscar on sustainable fuel and even recycles his bathwater at Clarence House.
Today, spectators watched a people’s procession make its way from Edinburgh Castle to the cathedral – a group around 100 strong, reflecting all aspects of Scottish society from the arts and politics, to education, civil society and business, including charities which the King supports as patron.
At its head was Shetland pony Corporal Cruachan IV, regimental mascot of the Royal Regiment of Scotland.
Protesters and royal fans lined the streets, with republican groups chanting ‘Not my King’ countered by others shouting ‘God save the King’.
Participants from the people’s procession sat in the cathedral’s pews as the Moderator said ideals like ‘mercy and peace’ should not be ‘domesticated or downgraded’ but be the ‘fabric of our being’.
She also said that society is on the ‘right track’ if people are ‘brave enough’ to ‘choose collaboration and trust over fear-filled circling of our wagons’.
‘Sisters and brothers, look around you. We are one global neighbourhood – intricately inter-related and completely co-dependent, woven together, like a tartan,’ she said.
The Red Arrows fly over the Royal Mile as part of a National Service of Dedication and Thanksgiving to mark the Coronation of Britain’s King Charles and Queen Camilla, in Edinburgh,
The Royal Airforce Red Arrows fly past after a National Service of Thanksgiving and Dedication in Edinburgh on Wednesday
Charles is presented with the Crown during today’s service, which came eight weeks after Charles and Camilla were crowned in an ancient ceremony at Westminster Abbey where the King made a pledge to ‘serve’
The Crown of Scotland had placed on the coffin of Charles’ mother the late Queen during a moving service at St Giles’ Cathedral after her death last year
The Princess and Prince of Wales stand alongside King Charles and Queen Camilla for their Scottish Coronation in St Giles’ Cathedral in Edinburgh
King Charles laughed as William and Catherine smiled as they shared a light moment before this afternoon’s service
William and Catherine – who are known in Scotland as the Duke and Duchess of Rothesay, walk down the aisle of St Giles’ Cathedral
The Kings Life Guard of the Household Cavalry proceed down the Royal Mile
A Household Cavalry horse rears up at the Palace of Holyroodhouse in Edinburgh
The service will feature centuries-old aspects of Scottish royal tradition along with new additions such as pieces of music written specially for the occasion, a psalm sung in Gaelic and the use of passages from the New Testament in Scots
Catherine and William share a brief chat as the King prepares to be presented with the Honours of Scotland
The Princess of Wales placed a supportive arm on her husband’s back after the ceremony in Edinburgh
The Right Reverend Sally Foster-Fulton delivered a ceremony on the importance on caring for the environment
The Moderator of the General Assembly of the Church of Scotland, Rt Rev Sally Foster-Fulton, will preach the sermon and then provide a blessing to close the service
Guests and dignitaries arrive for the National Service of Thanksgiving and Dedication at St Giles’ Cathedral
Scotland’s First Minister, Humza Yousaf, gave a Bible reading from the Old Testament during the service, and Olympic rower Dame Katherine Grainger carried the Sword of State.
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The Rt Rev Foster-Fulton concluded by telling the King and Queen: ‘Your Majesties, you have made it part of your mission to speak alongside creation, advocating for it.
;As we present the Honours of Scotland to you, we commit ourselves to walking that journey with you.
‘We are all a small part of something so much bigger – this beautiful, sacred creation and everyone and everything in it. Thanks be to God.’
Major General Alastair Bruce, governor of Edinburgh Castle, watched the people’s procession set off from the fortress’ esplanade, and it was joined by four mounted elements of the Scots Dragoon Guards, the Pipes & Drums of Robert Gordon’s Combined Cadet Force and the 51 Brigade Cadet Military Band.
Crowds lining crash barriers along the royal mile to watch Corporal Cruachan IV, the Shetland pony regimental mascot of The Royal Regiment of Scotland, leading the men of women in the procession.
William and Catherine, known as the Duke and Duchess of Rothesay in Scotland, were part of the royal procession and entered the cathedral behind the monarch and his wife
Catherine wore a Catherine Walker coat, hat by Philip Treacy and a necklace from the late Queen’s collection
The Prince and Princess of Wales leave the Palace of Holyroodhouse on their way to St Giles’ Cathedral
King Charles arriving at St Giles’ Cathedral for the National Service of Thanksgiving and Dedication
The King looked in jubilant mood as he was greeted by dignitaries
The honours of Scotland – the country’s crown jewels – leave Edinburgh Castle in a procession to St Giles’s Cathedral for a service to honour the King and Queen
The Crown, the Sceptre and the Sword of State travelled by car under military guard
The Honours of Scotland, crown, sword of state and sceptre, will soon follow escorted by military personnel from across the Royal Navy, Army and Royal Air Force and the Royal Company of Archers, who act as the King’s body guard in Scotland.
Three sisters, Julie Avery, 51, from Birmingham, Karen Shortiss, 54, from Penicuik, Midlothian, and Linda Halfpenny, 67, from New Zealand, were among those gathered along the Royal Mile to see Charles and Camilla.
Mrs Halfpenny has lived in New Zealand for 42 years and is in Britain to see her two sisters.
Her time at home coincided with Charles and Camilla’s visit to Scotland, so she phoned her sisters and asked if they could attend the event with her.
Mrs Avery said: ‘Linda is over here visiting and last week she sent me a message asking if I could have Wednesday off and could I come up, so I said ‘Yes alright.’
‘I came up last night and I’ll go home tomorrow morning to go to work tomorrow afternoon.’
Mrs Shortiss said: ‘We’ll spend the day together as well.’
Anti-monarchy activists could be heard booing and shouting ‘Not My King’ from a protest spot just yards from the procession route
Members of the Household Calvary Mounted Regiment lead the Royal Procession along the Royal Mile
The Scottish Coronation celebrations began today with a People’s Procession that set off down the Royal Mile from Edinburgh Castle at 1.15pm
A general view of the Combined Cadet Force Pipes and Drums and the Cadet Military Band as they proceed down the Royal Mile
The Kings Life Guard of the Household Cavalry march down the Royal Mile this afternoon
Members of the Royal Company of Archers leave the Palace of Holyroodhouse
The Royal Company of Archers are the King’s official bodyguard while he is in Scotland
An aerial photo showing massed bands processing down the Royal Mile in Edinburgh today
A group of mounted soldiers pass thousands of people who had gathered to witness the historic moment
The members of the People’s Procession were chosen to reflect all walks of life in Scotland
Members of the People’s Procession – pictured here – were chosen to represent all walks of life in Scotland
Those taking part in the procession down the Royal Mile included community volunteers and NHS workers
Leader of the House of Commons Penny Mordaunt arrives for the National Service of Thanksgiving and Dedication for King Charles III and Queen Camilla
Scotland’s First Minister Humza Yousaf (left) will give a reading during the service
Mrs Halfpenny said she had ‘come a long way’ and the sisters wanted a ‘good position’ to be able to see the royal procession.
Also in the crowd were four women from Italy, wearing fascinators and carrying royal family teacups.
They are on a business trip in Scotland and came along at midnight yesterday to scope out their position in the crowd, but arrived at 8.30am today.
Ciara, from Bologna, said: ‘We like the royal family and we want to share with our community to show what happened.’
Paula, also from Bologna, added: ‘We want to show our support to the new King.’
Well wishers on the Royal Mile in Edinburgh ahead of King Charles’ Scottish Coronation
Onlookers waving Union flags were interspersed with anti-monarchy protesters holding ‘Not My King’ banners
Members of the public wait outside St Giles’ Cathedral in Edinburgh, where the main ceremony will take place
Members of the public wait outside St Giles’ Cathedral ahead of the historic ceremony
There is tight security on the Royal Mile to try to stop the procession being interrupted by protesters
Elsewhere in the crowd was Margaret Jenkins, 62, from East Lothian, who said: ‘I’m excited to see King Charles, my King, and I know not everyone would agree.’
Anne Connolly, 65, from South Shields, said: ‘It’s a good day out. We’re looking forward to seeing the King and Camilla.’
Referring to an area fenced off for protesters outside the cathedral, she said: ‘They’ve given the protesters the best spot here, the best view. It isn’t fair.’
Protesters gathered outside the High Court building holding placards saying ‘Not My King’.
Supporters of the monarchy gathered alongside republicans before King Charles and Queen Camilla’s Scottish Coronation in Edinburgh today
The two groups stood alongside each other separated by small groups of stewards
Anti-monarchy activists chanting ‘Not My King’ were met with Union flag waving royal fans
One of the protesters said that the royal family is a ‘symbol of the state the country is in’.
She said: ‘They are a classic example of people who have too much when people have so little.
‘It’s not a personal thing against the King, but it is a democratic disgrace that he has this unelected position in a modern country.’
She said protesters had received an ‘absolutely fabulous’ response from passers-by.
She added: ‘It’s mostly tourists and they all find it very strange that we still have this odd constitutional quirk.’
Footage showed the republicans being greeted with an equally loud response from supporters of the Royal Family chanting ‘Charles King of Scots’ while waving Union flags.
Supporters of the Royal Family gathered in Edinburgh today alongside a crowd of anti-monarchy protesters (left)
One man outside St Giles’ Cathedral held a sign reading ‘only the tourists are cheering’
Another controversially branded King Charles III ‘king of the tax dodgers’.
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