Prince Charles and Princess Anne attend the Order of the Thistle Service 2022

The Prince of Wales and The Princess Royal lead the Order of the Thistle procession on Thursday.

The Order of the Thistle service is held every two years and is usually attended by all its Knights and Ladies. The Order includes 16 Knights and Ladies, Scottish men and women who have held public office or who have contributed to the nation’s life, plus members of the Royal Family.

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Charles and Anne attended the Order of the Thistle service during Holyrood Week. (Royal Family).

The royal siblings dressed in their striking green velvet robes, insignia and white-feathered hats, were greeted by packed crowds who were hoping to catch a glimpse of the royal duo.

Prince Charles was appointed Knight of the Order in February 1977. Princess Anne was appointed a Knight (yes, she insisted!) in November 2000.

Princess Anne during Thursday’s Order of the Thistle service. (Royal Family)

This year, two new members were installed to the Order of the Thistle, following their appointments earlier this year:

– The Right Honourable Dame Elish Angiolini – a Scottish lawyer who was appointed a Dame Commander of the Order of the British Empire in the 2011.
– The Right Honourable Sir George Reid – a Scottish politician, international aid director and academic.  He was knighted in 2012 for services to Scottish politics and public life.

Charles and Anne have stepped up with carrying out royal duties on behalf of The Queen in recent months. The Queen’s eldest son acted as her counsellor of state to attend the State Opening of Parliament, with Prince William. The Princess Royal daughter represented the 96-year-old monarch at this year’s Epsom Derby, as part of the Platinum Jubilee celebrations.

Charles during Thursday’s service. (Clarence House)

The Duke of Edinburgh was also amongst Royals who were part in the order, being appointed a Knight in April 1952, while his grandson, The Duke of Cambridge, is most recent royal addition, joining in July 2012.

Neither the Sovereign of the Order (Her Majesty) nor The Duke of Cambridge took part in today’s service.

There was no service in 2020 due to the coronavirus pandemic, and in 2018, The Queen attended alongside Prince William.

The only Order more senior than the Thistle is that of the Order of the Garter. The annual ceremony was held at Windsor in June.

The royal brother and sister attended the service on behalf of The Queen, who was not in attendance. (Clarence House)

Members of the Royal Family were in Scotland this week for Holyrood Week. The Queen has made a number of appearances this week. First attending the Ceremony of the Keys to start Holyrood Week. She attended the Act of Loyalty Parade on Tuesday, where she greeted with the royal salute, after she met three senior representatives from the armed forces.

On the fourth day of Holyrood Week, The Queen made a surprise during the Reddendo parade. The event saw over 300 officers and archers from The Queen’s Body Guard for Scotland parade in the gardens of the Palace of Holyroodhouse.

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