Charles hails Camilla as Queen Elizabeth is shown at work to mark historic jubilee

The Prince of Wales has paid tribute to his ‘darling’ Duchess of Cornwall – the future queen consort. Photograph: Jacob King / AFP/ Getty Images


The Prince of Wales has paid tribute to his “darling” Duchess of Cornwall – the future Queen Consort – for her “steadfast support” as his mother Queen Elizabeth was shown at work to mark her historic platinum jubilee.

Heir to throne Charles heralded the queen for how her “devotion to the welfare of all her people inspires still greater admiration with each passing year”.

Footage and a photograph of the monarch on duty working on her famous red boxes was released in honour of her Jubilee milestone.

Elizabeth II has become the first British sovereign in history to celebrate 70 years on the throne.

The smiling queen, seated in a chair at Sandringham House, was pictured with her papers of state on a table in front of her, with a poignant image of her late father King George VI holding one of his corgis nearby.

Queen Elizabeth smiling as she sits in Sandringham House in Norfolk. Image released to mark the start of platinum jubilee year. Photograph: Chris Jackson/Buckingham Palace/AFP/ Getty Images

The queen used her momentous occasion to issue her royal seal of approval for the duchess as, one day, Queen Camilla.

In an intervention that will significantly shape the future of the monarchy, the queen expressed her “sincere wish” that Camilla will be known as queen consort when Charles becomes king, and called on the public to support them both.

The prince, in a written message marking the queen’s accession day anniversary, said he and Camilla were “deeply conscious” of the honour.

“On this historic day, my wife and I join you all in congratulating her majesty the queen on the remarkable achievement of serving this nation, the realms and Commonwealth for seventy year,” the prince said.

‘Welfare’

“The queen’s devotion to the welfare of all her people inspires still greater admiration with each passing year.

“We are deeply conscious of the honour represented by my mother’s wish.

“As we have sought together to serve and support her majesty and the people of our communities, my darling wife has been my own steadfast support throughout.

“The year of this unprecedented platinum jubilee brings an opportunity for us all to come together in celebrating the service of the queen, by whose example we will continue to be led in the years to come.”

The queen, in the twilight years of her reign, is setting her affairs in order, paving the way for her daughter-in-law, once a royal mistress, to be called queen and crowned at Charles’s side on his coronation day.

The queen, who came to the throne when she was 25, is spending her accession day privately on the Sandringham estate in remembrance of her father George VI, whose death marked the start of her reign.

This jubilee is her first without her beloved husband of 73 years the Duke of Edinburgh, who died 10 months ago.

National celebrations marking the queen’s record-breaking service on the throne will be staged during a four-day bank holiday weekend from June 2nd-5th.

Tributes have been paid to the queen’s years of duty, with UK prime minister Boris Johnson acknowledging her “unwavering dedication to this nation”.

Labour leader Sir Keir Starmer praised her “unparalleled public service” and for being a “global symbol of grace and dignity”.

He added: “The queen has been one vital and valued constant in an ever-changing world, representing security and stability for our country, during the ups and downs of the last seven decades.”

The queen’s reign has stretched from the post-war years through a new millennium and into a radically altered 21st century.

Her time on the throne has seen 14 prime ministers from the second World War leader Sir Winston Churchill to Mr Johnson.

Debate

There was fierce debate and controversy in the run up to Charles and Camilla’s wedding 17 years ago over whether the then-Mrs Parker Bowles would one day be queen.

The wife of a king automatically becomes a queen consort and only a change in legislation will prevent her from doing so.

But royal aides insisted, when Camilla married Charles in 2005, that she did not want to be queen and said originally that the former Mrs Parker Bowles “intended” to be known instead as princess consort – the first in British history – instead.

But the careful use of the verb “to intend” left this open to change in the future.

Any mention of “princess consort” was removed from Charles’s website during a revamp in 2018.

Camilla was blamed for the breakdown of the prince’s marriage to Diana, Princess of Wales.

But in the decades after the divorce, the untimely death of Diana in 1997 and Camilla’s acceptance into The Firm, the public mood towards the Camilla has softened.

She has gradually taken on a more prominent position within the royal family, and was made a Privy Counsellor in 2016.

Through charity work championing literacy, and highlighting the problem of domestic abuse and sexual violence, the duchess has carved out her own royal role. – PA