‘Queen Camilla’ used officially for first time on King Charles coronation invitations

She has been known as queen consort since her husband King Charles ascended the throne

King Charles III and Queen Consort Camilla at Buckingham Palace. AP
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The title Queen Camilla has been used for the first time in an official capacity, appearing on invitations for King Charles III's coronation.

She had been referred to as the queen consort since the death of Queen Elizabeth II but is named as Queen Camilla alongside King Charles on the invitations, which are due to be sent to more than 2,000 guests.

The move marks the incredible journey of Queen Camilla over more than five decades, from romantic involvement, to mistress and finally wife of the king — and will end with her formally being crowned queen alongside the king.

Heir to the throne Prince George will play an important role in the coronation of his grandfather, alongside seven schoolboys, all named as pages of honour, who will “attend their majesties during the coronation service”.

The group is made up of family friends and close relatives of King Charles and his wife, including three of the queen’s grandchildren, and will be expected to carry the robes of prominent figures during the day.

With the coronation almost a month away, a new double portrait of the king and queen, wearing a Fiona Clare dress, has been released, showing them smiling in Buckingham Palace’s blue drawing room in an image taken by Hugo Burnand, a favourite photographer of the royal family.

A royal source said: “It made sense to refer to her majesty as the Queen Consort in the early months of his majesty’s reign, to distinguish from her majesty Queen Elizabeth II.

“‘Queen Camilla’ is the appropriate title to set against ‘King Charles’ on the invitation. The coronation is an appropriate time to start using 'Queen Camilla’ in an official capacity. All former queen consorts have been known as ‘queen’ plus their first name.”

The invitation was printed on recycled card and elaborately decorated with foliage in a design by heraldic artist and manuscript illuminator Andrew Jamieson, a brother of the Art Workers’ Guild, of which the king is an honorary member.

The Green Man, an ancient figure from British folklore symbolic of spring and rebirth, is the inspiration behind the design of the coronation invitation.

The elaborately decorated artwork features a colourful abundance of wildflowers and wildlife, with the head of the Green Man as its central motif to celebrate the start of the new reign.

The Green Man appears at the foot of the official invitation for the ceremony on May 6, crowned in natural foliage and formed with leaves of oak, ivy and hawthorn, and the UK’s emblematic flowers.

The British wildflower meadow bordering the invitation includes lily of the valley, cornflowers, wild strawberries, dog roses, bluebells and a sprig of rosemary for remembrance, seemingly in memory of the late queen, together with wildlife including a bee, a butterfly, a ladybird, a wren and a robin.

Flowers appear in groupings of three, signifying the king becoming Charles III — the third monarch of his name.

The king is known for his love of nature and his years of campaigning against climate change.

A lion, a unicorn and a boar — taken from the coats of arms of King Charles and his consort — can be seen among the flowers.

The invitation reads: “The Coronation of Their Majesties King Charles III & Queen Camilla — By Command of the King the Earl Marshall is directed to invite … to be present at the Abbey Church of Westminster on 6th day of May 2023.”

There had been speculation about what title she would hold when King Charles acceded to the throne, but the late queen put the rumours to bed in February last year when she said it was her “sincere wish that, when that time comes, Camilla will be known as queen consort”.

Her three grandsons, twin boys Gus and Louis, aged 13, by her daughter Laura Lopes, and 12-year-old Frederick, by son Tom Parker Bowles, as well as her great-nephew, Arthur Elliot, 11, will be the queen’s pages of honour.

The king’s pages are his grandson Prince George, aged nine; Nicholas Barclay, 13, grandson of Sarah Troughton one of the Queen’s Companions; Lord Oliver Cholmondeley, 13, son of the Marquess of Cholmondeley also known as filmmaker David Rocksavage and a friend of the Prince of Wales; and Ralph Tollemache, 12.

All eight schoolboys will form part of the lavish procession that will make its way through the nave of Westminster Abbey.

Updated: April 05, 2023, 8:20 AM