Prince Charles praises Elizabeth’s blessing for ‘Queen Camilla’
LONDON — Prince Charles on Sunday thanked his mother Queen Elizabeth for publicly stating her desire that his wife Camilla becomes Queen Consort when he becomes king, acknowledging the honor on the 70-year anniversary of her accession to the British throne.
The request — a blessing that will likely remove the need for any discussion about future titles — follows an earlier era when Camilla was vilified by the tabloid press for the breakdown of Charles’ marriage to his first wife, Princess Diana.
The 95-year-old queen had made her thoughts known on Saturday, saying it was her “sincere wish” that when the day comes, Camilla would be known as Queen Consort.
Charles made the comments on Sunday when he led tributes to the 95-year-old monarch as she passed a milestone never reached by any of her predecessors in 1,000 years.
“We are deeply conscious of the honor represented by my mother’s wish,” Charles said in a statement. “As we have sought together to serve and support Her Majesty and the people of our communities, my darling wife has been my own steadfast support throughout.”
Charles and Camilla, long-time lovers, were married in 2005, enabling her to gradually take on a more prominent role. With a current title of Duchess of Cornwall, Camilla is now a popular member of the family and regularly appears at official duties, alongside Charles and the queen.
The statement on the future of the monarchy comes as the country celebrates the queen’s role over the last 70 years.
Charles was joined by Prime Minister Boris Johnson, politicians, churches, and members of the public in praising the queen for her dedication to public service.
“The year of this unprecedented Platinum Jubilee brings an opportunity for us all to come together in celebrating the service of the queen, by whose example we will continue to be led in the years to come,” Charles said.
The country will hold national events in June.
During her seven decades on the throne, the queen has overseen huge social, economic, and political change, including the end of the British Empire.
Elizabeth became the queen of Britain and more than a dozen other realms including Canada, Australia, and New Zealand on the death of her father King George VI on Feb. 6, 1952, while she was in Kenya on an international tour.
The news was broken to her by her husband Prince Philip, who died last year aged 99 after more than 70 years by her side.
Elizabeth said on Saturday that she wished to renew the pledge she had made in 1947, when she turned 21, that her life would be one of devotion to the country.
Prime Minister Johnson said he paid tribute to her many years of service and “look forward to coming together as a country to celebrate her historic reign in the summer”.
Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison hailed “a truly remarkable milestone in a remarkable life”.
The queen has continued to carry out official duties well into her 90s but has been seen much less regularly of late after she spent a night in the hospital last October for an unspecified ailment and was then instructed by doctors to rest.
On Sunday the palace released a new photo of the queen, smiling broadly near a red despatch box that contains official government paperwork. On Saturday she was filmed meeting local community groups and joking with officials.
“I think I might just put a knife in it,” she said when presented with a large cake. “Somebody else can do the rest.”
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