Why King Charles is having a second coronation and what to expect

 During Royal Week in Scotland, the King and Queen will have a second coronation celebration. On Wednesday, Charles, who is 74 years old, will receive the Honours of Scotland (Crown Jewels) during a national service of thanksgiving at St Giles’ Cathedral in Edinburgh. 

This event follows the previous coronation ceremony held at Westminster Abbey in London in May, where Charles and Camilla were crowned in the presence of world leaders and foreign royals. 

In the ceremony in Edinburgh, the service will commence with a procession involving approximately 100 community groups, who will gather the honours from Edinburgh Castle.

The Royal Regiment of Scotland, along with their Shetland pony mascot Corporal Cruachan IV, and cadet musicians from the Combined Cadet Force Pipes and Drums, 51 Brigade Cadet Military Band, will escort the procession to St Giles’ Cathedral. 

Simultaneously, the royal procession, including the King, Queen, Prince, and Princess of Wales, also known as the Duke and Duchess of Rothesay in Scotland, will travel from the Palace of Holyroodhouse to the cathedral. 

The public will line the Royal Mile to witness both processions. At the conclusion of the service at St Giles’, a 21-gun salute will be fired from Edinburgh Castle, after which the royal procession will return to the palace. 

The ceremony will culminate with an RAF flypast.

Timings for the Scottish coronation

  • 1315 –  People’s Procession leaves Edinburgh Castle Esplanade
  • 1330 –  People’s Procession arrives at West Parliament Square
  • 1340 –  The Honours of Scotland (Crown Jewels) leave the Castle Esplanade under military and police escort
  • 1340 –  Military bands and Household Cavalry Mounted Regiments depart from Palace of Holyroodhouse to West Parliament Square 
  • 1350 –  The Honours arrive at West Parliament Square
  • 1405 –  Royal Procession leaves the Palace of Holyroodhouse 
  • 1410 –  Royal Procession arrives at St Giles’ Cathedral
  • 1415 –  National Service of Thanksgiving and Dedication begins
  • 1515 –  Service ends
  • 1520 –  King and Queen exit St Giles. Royal Gun Salute from Edinburgh Castle
  • 1540 –  RAF flypast

What are the Honours of Scotland?

The Honours of Scotland, which are the oldest Crown Jewels in Britain, have played a significant role in numerous major royal ceremonial occasions spanning five centuries. Among these treasures, the focal point is the Crown of Scotland, a splendid creation of gold and silver adorned with 94 pearls and 43 precious gemstones, including diamonds, garnets, and amethysts.

In 1540, King James V commissioned the creation of the Crown and wore it for the first time during the coronation of Mary of Guise later that same year. On the other hand, the origins of the Sceptre can be traced back to a presumed gift from Pope Alexander VI to James IV in 1494.

However, during the upcoming ceremony, the King will be presented with a new sword. This change is necessitated by the delicate condition of the Sword of State, which was bestowed upon James IV by Pope Julius II in 1507.

Dame Katherine Grainger, an Olympic rower, expressed her gratitude for the opportunity to bear the Elizabeth Sword during the King’s coronation ceremony. She considers it a privilege, even though she acknowledges that it will present a considerable physical challenge.

How can I watch the service?

If you are unable to attend the event in person, you can still watch the People’s Processions, the Royal Procession, and the National Service of Dedication and Thanksgiving on television. Additionally, you can tune in to BBC Radio 3 to listen to the service.

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