Charles makes first King’s speech in 72 years amid parliamentary pomp

LONDON – King Charles III wore a very heavy crown. Someone called Black Rod slammed the door in her face. A lawmaker was held “hostage” by Buckingham Palace.

It’s the Royal Opening of Parliament, the year the British monarch announces new laws on the government’s agenda, but this being Britain, there was an elaborate ceremony steeped in ancient customs that might seem a bit confusing to the uninitiated.

This is the first time a king has given birth in over 70 years Speech, an event made famous — at least to Americans — by the 2010 film starring Colin Firth as the warlord King George VI. Since 1952, she has held this role as Queen, although in 2022, due to her ill health, Charles stood in for her mother.

Prince Charles opens Parliament, but it’s still the Queen’s Speech

This was also a first For Prime Minister Rishi Sunak – he hopes it won’t be his last. His Conservative Party is lagging badly in the polls, and an election must be called by January 2025.

The king’s speech is read by a king sitting on a gilded throne, but in this case, the king is merely a messenger. The speech was written entirely by the government and was a moment for the prime minister to show what the ruling party’s priorities are. With an election looming, the speech was closely watched as there were no clues as to how the Conservatives planned to campaign in the next election.

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Charles, a lifelong environmentalist, was reading the first bill for a new system to issue annual oil and gas licenses. Under the current system, licenses are issued sporadically, but the government says the new policy is crucial for energy security. Charles read the words with a deadpan delivery, expected of a monarch considered apolitical.

Environmental groups Opposition to the move said the United Kingdom should focus on renewables and that the move was an attempt to create a wedge issue with the opposition Labor Party.

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Charles, or rather the speech he was given to read, also announced legislative reforms, including a smoking ban as a step towards creating a smoke-free generation; New controller for English football; Greater powers for judges to compel convicted criminals to appear in the dock for their sentencing hearings; and prohibition of public bodies Abandonment of Israel.

The ceremony is a collection of centuries-old customs that harkens back to a time when the relationship between the King and Parliament was much richer. Before Charles arrived at Parliament, royal bodyguards searched its cellars for explosives – a reference to Guy Fawkes’s 1605 “Gun Plot” – a failed attempt by English Catholics to overthrow the Protestant King James I and Parliament.

The most popular part of the festival Maybe when Black wireA senior official in the House of Lords knocked on the door of the House of Commons with her black ebony rod, only to see the door slammed in her face – this It symbolized the independence of the House of Commons from the King.

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Ignoring the frosty reception, Black Rod knocked three times on the door with his ceremonial staff – there was a dent from years of banging – and the door to the House of Commons chamber finally opened. Lawmakers then emerged and followed Black Rod into the House of Lords to hear the King’s speech.

In another tradition, inspired by the beheading of King Charles I in 1649, a lawmaker was held “hostage” in Buckingham Palace during the ceremony to guarantee the king’s safe return.

The costumes were elaborate. Lindsey Hoyle, the Speaker of the House of Commons, spoke enthusiastically to the BBC about his clothes. “I don’t wear tights every day! So today I put on my tights, breeches and of course the jacket and the gold gown … I always think the lace is special.

Charles and Queen Camilla made the short journey between Buckingham Palace and Westminster in the Diamond Jubilee State Coach. Some of the regalia — the cap of maintenance, the Great Sword of State and the Imperial State Crown set with 2,868 diamonds — arrived in their own carriage.

After the speech, lawmakers returned to the House of Commons, where the usual cut and thrust of politics resumed. Sunak and Labor leader Keir Starmer will hold a day-long debate on the legislative plan outlined in the speech, culminating in a vote.

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