With the Coronation weekend fast approaching, we’ve taken an in-depth look at what we can expect to happen over the bank holiday weekend in May. It will be marked with events across the country – will you be joining in?
Saturday 6th May
The Coronation of The King and The Queen will take place at Westminster Abbey on 6th May at 11am. The invitation was released by Buckingham Palace and features intricate details, as well as a tribute to the late Elizabeth II.
Their Majesties will arrive at the Abbey in procession from Buckingham Palace, known as ‘The King’s Procession’. They will travel to Westminster Abbey in the Diamond Jubilee State Coach. The procession route will take them down The Mall via Admiralty Arch, along the south side of Trafalgar Square, past Whitehall and Parliament Street, around the east and south sides of Parliament Square to Broad Sanctuary, to finally arrive at the Abbey.
The service will be conducted by the Archbishop of Canterbury and will reflect the Monarch’s role today and look towards the future, whilst being rooted in longstanding traditions and pageantry.
Buckingham Palace confirmed that His Majesty had commissioned 12 new pieces of music for the Service.
We will also see a range of Coronation regalia during the ceremony, including the Orb, the Sceptre and the Sovereign’s ring. Buckingham Palace also confirmed that The Queen Consort’s regalia will also be seen. Her Majesty with be given the Queen Consort’s ring, the Queen Consort’s rod with dove and the Queen Consort’s Sceptre.
We know that The King will wear St Edward’s Crown, whilst The Queen will wear Queen Mary’s Crown. Charles will also swear the traditional oath to govern his people according to the relevant laws, as well as to defend the Protestant faith.
After the service, Their Majesties will return to Buckingham Palace in a larger ceremonial procession, known as ‘The Coronation Procession’. They will travel the same route as ‘The King’s Procession’ but in reverse and will ride in the Gold State Coach. The inward journey will last 1.3 miles, much shorter than the 5 miles Elizabeth II took during her Coronation in 1953.
The newly-crowned King and Queen will be joined in this procession by other members of the Royal Family as they process through the crowds in central London.
At Buckingham Palace, The King and Queen, accompanied by family members, will appear on the balcony to conclude the day’s ceremonial events.
Sunday 7th May
The Coronation Big Lunch will start off the Sunday; neighbours and communities are invited to share food and fun together, across the country in street-party like occasions.
Royal watchers saw the public host Big Lunches as part of the late Queen’s Platinum Jubilee.
A special Coronation Concert will take place at Windsor Castle on this day, which will bring together music icons and contemporary stars from all over the world. The concert will be attended by a public audience, including volunteers from The King and Queen’s many charity affiliations.
The concert will feature an exclusive performance from the Coronation Choir, a group created from the nation’s keenest community choirs and singers from across the UK. There will also be an accompanying documentary exploring the formation of the new choir and will tell the stories of the people representing the many faces and voices of the country.
The event at Windsor Castle will feature the centrepiece, ‘Lighting up the Nation’. Locations across the UK are to be lit up with projections, drones, lasers and illuminations, as the evening light draws in.
The location of the Concert is poignant as it is not only celebrating The King’s Coronation, against the backdrop of the castle to which Charles belongs, but it is also the late Queen’s final resting place.
Monday 8th May
Members of the public are invited to take part in The Big Help Out. The final day of the coronation weekend will encourage people to try volunteering for themselves, and join the work being undertaken to support their local areas.
The day will act as a tribute to His Majesty’s decades of public service as Prince of Wales and now as The King.
The aim of the Big Help Out is to create a lasting volunteering legacy for the historic occasion.