King Charles III addresses the nation for the first time since Queen's death

·Breaking News Editor, Yahoo News UK
·4-min read

King Charles III has pledged his "lifelong service" to the United Kingdom as he addressed the nation for the first time as monarch.

He paid a moving tribute to the Queen as a mother as well as a ruler, thanking his "darling Mama".

The King said: "Throughout her life, Her Majesty The Queen – my beloved mother – was an inspiration and example to me and to all my family, and we owe her the most heartfelt debt any family can owe to their mother.”

He continued: “And, as every member of my family can testify, she combined these qualities with warmth, humour and an unerring ability always to see the best in people.”

Addressing the new line of succession, he revealed that the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge have become the Prince and Princess of Wales.

Read more: The King’s address in full

King Charles III pictured making his address to the nation for the first time since taking the British throne. (PA)
King Charles III pictured making his address to the nation for the first time since taking the British throne. (PA)

He added: “With Catherine beside him, our new Prince and Princess of Wales will, I know, continue to inspire and lead our national conversations, helping to bring the marginal to the centre ground where vital help can be given.”

The King added he wished to “express my love for Harry and Meghan as they continue to build their lives overseas”.

Finishing the address on a personal note, the King said: “To my darling Mama, as you begin your last great journey to join my dear late Papa, I want simply to say this: thank you.

"Thank you for your love and devotion to our family and to the family of nations you have served so diligently all these years. May ‘flights of angels sing thee to thy rest’.”

Read more: King Charles and Queen Consort walk into palace after being greeted by crowds

Members of the public visit Buckingham Palace to pay their respects and lay flowers after the death of Queen Elizabeth II on Thursday. Picture date: Friday September 9, 2022.
Members of the public visit Buckingham Palace to pay their respects. (PA)
The Duchess of Cornwall, the Prince of Wales, Queen Elizabeth II, Prince George, the Duke of Cambridge, Princess Charlotte, Prince Louis, and the Duchess of Cambridge appear on the balcony of Buckingham Palace at the end of the Platinum Jubilee Pageant, on day four of the Platinum Jubilee celebrations. Picture date: Sunday June 5, 2022.
The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge, pictured with the Queen in June, have been made the Prince and Princess of Wales. (PA)

Charles became King following his mother's death at the age of 96 on Thursday afternoon.

It is a role he has been preparing for almost his entire life. The Queen took the throne in 1952 when he was only three, making him the longest heir apparent in history.

Before the historic address to the nation, Charles met a number of citizens during a short walkabout at Buckingham Palace.

The King and Queen Consort received heartfelt condolences from the public outside the Palace.

Camilla followed at a distance behind Charles, before joining him at his side to view the large collection of brightly coloured floral bouquets.

King Charles III shakes hands with Prime Minister Liz Truss during their first audience at Buckingham Palace, London, following the death of Queen Elizabeth II on Thursday. Picture date: Friday September 9, 2022.
King Charles III shakes hands with Prime Minister Liz Truss during their first audience at Buckingham Palace, London. (PA)
Crowds look on as King Charles III and Camilla The Queen Consort arrive at Buckingham Palace, London. Credit: Doug Peters/EMPICS
Crowds look on as King Charles III and Camilla The Queen Consort arrive at Buckingham Palace, London. Credit: Doug Peters/EMPICS
King Charles III and the Queen look at flowers outside Buckingham Palace, London after travelling from Balmoral following the death of Queen Elizabeth II on Thursday. Picture date: Friday September 9, 2022.
King Charles III and the Queen look at flowers outside Buckingham Palace, London after travelling from Balmoral following the death of the Queen. (PA)

One woman kissed him on the hand. Another asked: "Can I kiss you?", before giving him a peck on the cheek.

The King was heard telling people: "Thank you so much, it's so kind, it really is", "God bless you" and "I'm very touched".

Thousands have flocked the Queen’s former homes of Buckingham Palace, Windsor Castle and Balmoral, leaving bouquets, personal notes and candles in her honour.

King Charles III looks at flowers outside Buckingham Palace, London after travelling from Balmoral following the death of Queen Elizabeth II on Thursday. Picture date: Friday September 9, 2022.
Thousands of people have flocked the Queen’s former homes of Buckingham Palace, Windsor Castle and Balmoral to pay their respects, leaving hundreds of bouquets, personal notes and candles in her honour. (PA)
King Charles III and the Queen walk across the forecourt of Buckingham Palace, London, as he enters the palace for the first time as the new King after travelling from Balmoral following the death of Queen Elizabeth II on Thursday. Picture date: Friday September 9, 2022.
King Charles III and the Queen walk across the forecourt of Buckingham Palace for the first time since the death of the Queen. (PA)
King Charles III and the Queen wave to the crowd outside Buckingham Palace, London after travelling from Balmoral following the death of Queen Elizabeth II on Thursday. Picture date: Friday September 9, 2022.
King Charles III and the Queen wave to the crowd outside Buckingham Palace. (PA)
A car carrying King Charles III and The Queen leaving Buckingham Palace, following the death of Queen Elizabeth II on Thursday. Picture date: Friday September 9, 2022.
Charles gave the order that a period of “Royal Mourning” for the Queen will be observed from now until seven days after her funeral. (PA)

Charles has already turned his hand to his duties.

He gave the order that a period of “Royal Mourning” for the Queen will be observed from now until seven days after her funeral.

Royal Mourning will be observed by members of the royal family, royal household staff and representatives of the royal household on official duties, together with troops committed to ceremonial duties.

Royal salutes were fired with one round for every year of the Queen’s life on Friday at 1pm in Hyde Park by the King’s Troop Royal Horse Artillery.

Thousands of people stood in solemn silence for 16 minutes as the cannons boomed once every 10 seconds, sending smoke across the grounds with each round, applauding as the spectacle came to an end.