How King Charles was born at Buckingham Palace at 9.14pm 75 years ago11/15/2023
Born at 9.14pm with an ‘interesting pair of hands’: Queen’s letter to her music teacher on birth of King Charles at Buckingham Palace 75 years ago today when policeman announced ‘It’s a Prince’ to delighted crowd outside
- FOLLOW OUR LIVE BLOG: King Charles 75th birthday LIVE updates
Described as a ‘really splendid baby’, the tiny Prince Charles was born 75 years ago today in the palace he now occupies as monarch.
The future King’s arrival at Buckingham Palace at 9.14pm was the first royal birth at the London residence in 62 years.
The then Princess Elizabeth had endured a difficult 30 hours of labour before she underwent a Caesarian in a makeshift maternity ward in the palace’s Belgian Suite.
Soon afterwards, the thousands of Britons who were massed outside the palace gates got the news they had been waiting for.
Having just been told by royal page Stanley Childs, the police inspector on duty told the masses through cupped hands: ‘It’s a prince’.
Moments later, cheers went up as the news spread through the crowd.
Prince Philip, who had been engaged in an anxious game of squash while his wife was in labour, swiftly returned to the palace, where he cracked open a bottle of champagne.
The Queen told her music teacher in the following weeks that Charles had an ‘interesting pair of hands for a baby’ – a fact which has been commented on in more recent years.
Described as a ‘really splendid baby’, the tiny Prince Charles was born 75 years ago today in the palace he now occupies as monarch. The King’s arrival at Buckingham Palace at 9.14pm was the first royal birth at the London residence in 62 years. Above: Charles with the then Princess Elizabeth at his christening in December 1948
The Queen told her music teacher in the following weeks that Charles had an ‘interesting pair of hands for a baby’ – a fact which has been commented on in more recent years. Above: Charles with his mother in 1949
READ MORE: King Charles 75th birthday LIVE updates: William posts sweet picture with his father on a family skiing trip as he sends well wishes – but Harry is absent from picture of royals on Buckingham Palace balcony
The birth of the heir to the throne was the first in Buckingham Palace since that of Princess Patricia – the daughter of Queen Victoria’s third son Prince Arthur, Duke of Connaught.
The Belgian Suite would later be used for the arrivals of both Prince Andrew and Prince Edward.
Having played his squash game, Philip was toweling off after having a swim when a footman told informed him of Charles’ arrival.
Along with the champagne, he greeted the Queen after she had woken from the dose of anaesthetic with a bouquet of red roses and carnations – her favourites.
Up until Charles’s arrival, it had been traditional for the Home Secretary to be in attendance to witness the birth of the heir to the throne.
But the tradition was dispensed with, marking the first time since the 18th century that no government official had been present for an heir’s birth.
The Queen told her music teacher in a letter: ‘The baby is very sweet and we are enormously proud of him.
The King (pictured) has garnered a huge amount of attention since ascending the throne for his self-described ‘sausage fingers’
Crowds gather in front of Buckingham Palace in November 1948 as they await news of Charles’ birth
The Daily Mail’s coverage of the King’s birth at Buckingham Palace. Crowds massed outside to await news of the royal birth
The Daily Mail’s front page after Charles’s christening, which took place on December 15, 1948
‘He has an interesting pair of hands for a baby.
‘They are rather large, but with fine long fingers quite unlike mine and certainly unlike his father’s.
‘It will be interesting to see what they become.’
When Philip was asked what his baby son looked like, he said with characteristic bluntness: ‘A plum pudding’.
Outside the Palace gates, the crowd was fruitlessly shouting ‘we want Philip!’.
When he didn’t emerge, they sang lullabies instead.
In line with tradition, the lights in the Trafalgar Square fountain were changed to blue to signal a boy.
Troops around the capital fired ceremonial salutes, as the bells at Westminster Abbey and St Paul’s Cathedral rang out.
Queen Mary – Charles’s great-grandmother – was taken up to the Princess’s rooms to see the tiny baby.
As she was leaving the Palace afterwards to head back to Marlborough House, the delighted crowd surged forwards and almost brought her car to a standstill.
Princess Elizabeth and Prince Philip posed for an official photo with Prince Charles at his christening
The future Queen holds her baby son as she poses for a photo at his christening with her grandmother Queen Mary and father King Charles
Queen Elizabeth, the Queen Mother holds baby Charles in her arms at his christening
A tiny Prince Charles sleeps in the arms of his great-grandmother Queen Mary at his christening
The Daily Mail reported how the police had to ask the jubilant wellwishers for a ‘little quiet’.
When that didn’t dampen their spirits, two Palace officials came out to say: ‘Princess Elizabeth wants to have some rest. Prince Philip is with her and there will be nothing more tonight.’
Charles was christened in Buckingham Palace’s Music Room on December 15 in a service overseen by the Archbishop of Canterbury, Geoffrey Fisher.
Present for the family occasion were Charles’s maternal grandparents, King George VI and Queen Elizabeth.
They beamed for a family photo with Charles in his flowing white gown and Philip standing behind them.
The official images were taken by Sterling Henry Nahum – who also took the official photographs for the Queen and Prince Philip’s wedding.
Charles spent the first year of his life at his parents’ rented home, Windlesham Moor in Surrey
The Queen and Philip moved in shortly after their wedding in 1947 and stayed there until late 1949
Charles, then aged just nine months, is seen sitting on the lawn at Windlesham in July 1949
Prince Philip holds his eldest son in his arms at Windlesham as Princess Elizabeth looks on. The photo was taken in July 1949
An aerial view of Windlesham Moor in Surrey, the country home of then Princess Elizabeth and the Duke of Edinburgh
Charles spent the first year of his life at his parents’ rented home, Windlesham Moor in Surrey.
Photos show him sitting in a play pen in the grounds of the property and playing with his parents on the lawn.
Windlesham was six miles from Windsor Castle, and also not far from Bagshot Park, which is now the home of Prince Edward and his wife Sophie, the Countess of Wessex.
The Queen and Philip moved in shortly after their wedding in 1947 and stayed there until late 1949.
Source: Read Full Article