In a London market, everything is prepared for the coronation of Carlos III: key rings, spoons, and sewing thimbles with the image of the new king. But customers are missing, a little excited about the event.
The coronation of Carlos and his wife Camilla will take place on May 6 at Westminster Abbey. In 1953 his mother, Elizabeth II, had a lavish ceremony and huge popular enthusiasm.
However, little trace remains of that national impetus. A poll in mid-April showed that two-thirds of Britons expressed no interest in the event.
“People are buying less than last year, the jubilee of Elizabeth II’s 70-year reign”, lamented Kirtesh Patel, who sells trinkets dedicated to the new monarch at Walthamstow market in north-east London.
Mugs with a portrait of Carlos and the mention “Coronation of the Emperor” are sold for 6 pounds ($7.5) and key rings for 3.
Planning to watch the #Coronation procession on Saturday 6 May?
Central London will be very busy, so plan your journey and prepare for your visit
For the latest timings and information on public viewing areas, read our guidance
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— Department for Culture, Media and Sport (@DCMS) April 28, 2023
“People are less interested in this king,” said the 44-year-old Indian businessman.
The sovereign, who died in September at the age of 96, was hugely popular. But his heir is an elderly king, 74, and his marriage to Camilla is far from the glamor of her son Guillermo with Catalina.
Sellers also expose inflation above 10%, causing millions of Britons to suffer and reorder their priorities.
Near her shop, 82-year-old retired teacher Carol McNeil made it clear from the outset that she was not “anti-monarchy” and would follow the coronation.
But he is “troubled” because the ceremony has “cost too much” for the country, even though it is much more modest than the 1953 ceremony.
For Carole McNeill, the royal family should be doing more. “When you hear they have all the money, they should pay it themselves,” he protested.
Rose Vetch declares herself to be a “Republican”, thereby leaving after the coronation. “If the weather is nice, I’ll go for a walk in the countryside to try not to think about the monarchy,” said the 49-year-old teacher and researcher.
Your opinion is in the minority. According to a recent poll, 58% of Britons maintain their support for the monarchy and only 26% want an elected head of state.
On 2 June 1953, Prince Charles became the first child in British history to witness his mother’s coronation when he attended Queen Elizabeth II’s ceremony at the age of four.
On 2 June 1953, Prince Charles became the first child in British history to witness their mother’s Coronation when he attended Queen Elizabeth II’s ceremony at the age of four.
In just a week’s time, King Charles III will become the 40th Monarch to be Crowned at @Wabbey.
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— The Royal Family (@RoyalFamily) April 29, 2023
This is why there are people like Peter Heseltine who eagerly look forward to the weekend celebrations.
In 1953, when he was just five years old, the retired accountant went to The Mall, the avenue that starts from Buckingham Palace, to celebrate Elizabeth II’s accession to the throne.
“Long live the king!” His wife Lynne Jones, a retired civil servant, took pride in introducing herself as a “great supporter of the monarchy”.
His house is decorated with banners depicting Carlos III. “The older generation is more favorable” to the Crown, he acknowledged.