Carlos III: A Royal with Two Coronations
Carlos III, head of the British State and the monarch who will be crowned on May 6 at Westminster Abbey, is not the only one who can say that he has been to two coronations in his life: that of his mother, Elizabeth II, and her own. Indeed, the new King of the United Kingdom was present in the royal box between his grandmother, the Queen Mother, and her aunt, Princess Margaret, on the historic June 2, 1953 in which Elizabeth II was crowned.
She was three months away from turning five and she had already gotten used to occupying a second place in the life of her mother, who had been acting as British sovereign for a year and a half. Among the guests at the abbey were four more members of the British Royal Family, all grandchildren of George V and Mary of Teck, who may be present at Charles III’s coronation, of which an official guest list has not yet been provided.
The Duke of Gloucester: A Royal with a Tragic Turn of Events
The current Duke of Gloucester, Prince Richard, was eight years old when his first cousin, Elizabeth II, ascended the throne and poses in first row in the family photo. His father was Prince Henry, George VI’s younger brother. He was fifth in line when he was born but is now number 30. Like many Windsors, the Duke of Gloucester studied between Eton and Cambridge, studying architecture and working in the Ministry of Public Works when the death of his older brother, the Prince William, in a plane crash made him change his plans.
The death of his brother placed him as the future Duke of Gloucester, so he made himself available to Elizabeth II and has worked throughout his life as a member of the British Royal Family representing Elizabeth II, even outside the United Kingdom, and as State Counsellor.
The Kents: Princes of Privileges
In the same group of “dear cousins” are the Kents, the three children of Prince George of Kent, who was another of George VI’s little brothers , father of Elizabeth II. Princes Eduardo, Alejandra and Miguel de Kent are part of the line of succession to the British throne and as cradle princes they received all kinds of royal privileges, such as being baptized in the private chapels of the royal residences, marrying (in the case of the princess Alejandra) at Westminster Abbey, and attend the coronation ceremony of her cousin Elizabeth III.
All have been part of the active members of the British Royal Family, that is, they have worked for the institution and are part of that “old guard” with which it is still not clear what Carlos III is going to do. Both Prince Edward (Duke of Kent, not to be confused with Prince Edward who is the brother of Charles III) and Princess Alejandra continue to appear in the website of the British Royal House as active members and both, together with the Dukes of Gloucester, were on the balcony of Buckingham Palace for the revealing photo of Elizabeth II’s Platinum Jubilee that marked a clear difference between those who are part and those who don’t.
Andrew Parker-Bowles: Witnessing Two Coronations
This exceptional situation, that of witnessing two coronations, when one of them was the longest-serving sovereign of the United Kingdom, has also been presented to Andrew Parker-Bowles, Camilla’s first husband. According to The Times, he is also invited to the coronation because of the good relationship he has with his ex-wife and, above all, because the male grandchildren they have in common will have an important place that day as pages of the new queen.
Curiously, that same role, that of a page, was played by Andrew Parker-Bowles himself at the coronation of Elizabeth II in 1953, when he was 13 years old, as he himself explained, it was so because his mother was a good friend of the Duke of Norfolk, the organizer of the state ceremony. Nor should we forget that Andrew, a soldier in the British Army, was always in the Windsor family circle, was and still is a good friend of Princess Anne and in his time, before the divorce of both marriages, was a polo partner of the Prince Carlos.