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Why the Queen didn't attend Charles and Camilla's wedding

Why the Queen didn't attend Charles and Camilla's wedding

Neither the Queen nor husband Prince Philip were present as Charles married second wife Camilla Parker-Bowles in a civil ceremony in 2005

When Charles and Camilla got married in 2005, there was one person not present as they exchanged vows: Charles’ mother, the late Queen Elizabeth

Neither the Queen nor husband Prince Philip were present as Charles married second wife Camilla Parker-Bowles in a civil ceremony, which followed his marriage to Princess Diana from 1981 until their divorce in 1996. 

According to The Telegraph’s Chief Reporter Andrew Alderson, her absence was all down to what she felt was appropriate. 

In an article from April that year, Alderson explained how the Queen – as head of the Church of England – did not believe she could part in the proceedings as the Church actively discourages divorce. 

Charles and Camilla leaving St George's Chapel, Windsor, following the blessing of their wedding.
PA Images/Alamy Stock Photo

Not only was Charles a divorcee, Camilla had also divorced ex-husband Andrew Parker Bowles in 1995. 

“The Queen has let it be known that the reason she will not be attending the wedding of Prince of Wales is because she is putting her duties as the head of the Church of England before family feelings,” Alderson wrote at the time. 

“She has told a friend that she feels it incompatible with her role as Supreme Governor of the Church to attend a civil marriage ceremony, particularly one involving the heir to the throne. She does not want to set a precedent that could damage the Church of England.” 

Alderson claimed the monarch had told a friend that she did not feel her position ‘permitted’ her attendance, while a senior royal official also told him: “The Queen takes her position as Supreme Governor of the Church of England incredibly seriously. She also has great personal faith." 

While there were inaccurate rumours that the Queen did not want to partake in the ‘town hall’ service, another aide said that the venue was ‘never the issue’. 

Queen Elizabeth with Prince Charles and Camilla during the Platinum Jubilee Pageant.
REUTERS/Alamy Stock Photo

They added: “The civil nature of the service is the issue. She did not feel it was appropriate for her to attend." 

While the Queen did not attend the ceremony itself, the Queen and her husband came along for the blessing afterwards, and publicly congratulated the couple before the marriage. 

They also held a reception for Charles and Camilla at Windsor Castle, which welcomed more than 700 guests. 

According to The Telegraph, she even gave a heartfelt speech to the couple, reportedly saying: “They have overcome Becher’s Brook and The Chair and all kind of other terrible obstacles. 

“They have come through and I’m very proud and wish them well. 

“My son is home and dry with the woman he loves.” 

Earlier this year, the Queen also surprised the nation by announcing that Camilla would become Queen Consort when her son took the throne. 

She said in a statement: "I remain eternally grateful for, and humbled by, the loyalty and affection that you continue to give me. And when, in the fullness of time, my son Charles becomes King, I know you will give him and his wife Camilla the same support that you have given me; and it is my sincere wish that, when the time comes, Camilla will be known as Queen Consort as she continues her own loyal service." 

Featured Image Credit: Shutterstock

Topics: The Queen, Royal Family