The royal family has gathered together at Buckingham Palace to celebrate Prince Charles’s 50th year as the Prince of Wales, greeting dozens of high-profile guests and mingling with charity workers from the prince’s many Welsh charities and patronages.
Everyone from the Queen to Princess Anne, the Duchess of Cornwall, and the Cambridges and the Sussexes were in attendance at the glamorous gathering, which took place in one of the palace’s beautiful grand reception rooms.
It was the first time the senior members of the royal family have been pictured together since Christmas, and the first time William, Catherine, Harry and Meghan have been seen together since nasty rumours began to circulate of a rift between the foursome.
Despite the negative media coverage of their relationship, the four royals looked perfectly comfortable in each others company and smiled and chatted as they watched the Queen and Charles inspected the coronet used during the 1969 ceremony to crown him Prince of Wales.
Prince William and Prince Harry were seen leaning their heads together at one point to share a private joke and appeared as close as ever as they stood beside their wives.
Aside from the royals, other high-profile guests at the event included British Prime Minister Theresa May and the Archbishop of Canterbury, who gave a moving speech on Charles’s 50 years of serves as the Prince of Wales and his unwavering dedication to his role.
“When you are second in the land, to serve is not automatic, human nature relishes leisure and privilege: serving requires discipline, values, a moral drive that sees service as virtue,” the archbishop said.
“Never in the history of the role can there have been such dedicated service, such honourable fulfilling of the promise at the Investiture, “I, Charles, Prince of Wales, do become your liege man of life and limb and of earthly worship, and faith and truth I bear unto you, to live and die against all manner of folks.
“Service was in the oath, and service has marked the 50 years, service often publicly unnoticed, unseen.”
He praised the prince for carrying out many of his duties diligently and quietly, often doing work that is not covered by the media or recognised by the wider public.
“The character required includes the rare gift of humility, of accepting advice, of knowing limits,” he said.
“It requires perseverance, because service may become wearisome, and the self seeks to push forward.
“This Prince of Wales has guarded the sacred duty of service and kept the fire, not only alight but burning more brightly with the passing years.”
The event comes a day after the royal family was forced to update its social media policy to try to head off online trolls that have made a sport out of posting threatening and nasty comments about Catherine and Meghan.
The royals even went as far as to say they would contact police if particular comments breached their guidelines in an effort to deter “obscene, offensive, threatening, abusive [and] hateful” posts about the duchesses and other members of the family.