UK's King Charles hosts reception at Buckingham Palace to celebrate Asian communities

More than 300 people from the arts, media, fashion, business and health care attended

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King Charles and Queen Consort Camilla hosted a reception at Buckingham Palace on Wednesday evening to celebrate the contribution that East and South-East Asian communities make to Britain.

Guests including fashion designers Alexa Chung and John Rocha, the Crown Prince of Selangor, Malaysia, and “Korean Englishman” YouTubers, were greeted by the royal couple.

More than 300 people from across various sectors including the arts, media, fashion, business and health care were served champagne and canapes throughout the evening.

Other members of the royal family joined the celebratory event — the Earl of Wessex, the Princess Royal, the Duke of Kent, the Duchess of Gloucester and Princess Alexandra.

Guests gathered in the White Drawing Room, Blue Drawing Room and Picture Gallery to greet their royal hosts.

Ms Chung, wearing a sparkling dress, said she had “a lovely time”.

Mr Rocha, a Chinese-Irish designer born in Hong Kong, said he felt “very proud” to be at the reception.

He said it was amazing that he had been born “in a colony” and was now “here talking to the king”.

Mr Rocha called the palace “a wonderful place” and recalled speaking with King Charles about fishing when he arrived to collect his CBE in 2002.

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YouTubers Joshua Carrot and Oliver Kendal, who host the “Korean Englishman” channel centred around sharing South Korean culture and food, said they were “amazed” the king had heard of them.

The channel has more than five million subscribers on YouTube.

Mr Carrot asked the king whether he had ever tried Korean food.

“He said he was a big fan of the food," he said. "He liked everything unless it was a bit too spicy."

The reception took place shortly after Lunar New Year, celebrated by Chinese, South Korean, Vietnamese, Malaysian, Singaporean, Lao, Thai, Mongolian, Bruneian, Indonesian, Japanese, Cambodian, Filipino and East Timorese communities around the world.

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In February 2022, King Charles and Queen Consort Camilla, when they were the Prince of Wales and The Duchess of Cornwall, visited Chinatown in London to mark Lunar New Year.

They visited local shops, organisations and communities, and the king joined a conversation about hate crime towards the Chinese and wider East and South-East Asian communities.

Meanwhile, the queen consort visited the Chinese Information and Advice Centre where she met police officers, immigration case workers and clients.

Updated: February 01, 2023, 11:50 PM