On Wednesday, Scotland will mark the coronation of King Charles and his wife Camilla with a grand procession and a service of thanksgiving. At the historic event, Charles will be presented with the oldest crown jewels in Britain, the Honours of Scotland.
The festivities serve to honor the union of England and Scotland under one monarch since 1603. On Scotland’s famous Royal Mile street,there will be both a People’s Procession, featuring about 100 people representing various aspects of Scottish life, and a Royal Procession with hundreds of service personnel.
At the subsequent thanksgiving service at St Giles’ Cathedral in Edinburgh, Charles will receive the Crown of Scotland, made for James V in 1540 and used to crown Mary Queen of Scots in 1543, as well as the Sceptre, which was originally given to James IV by Pope Alexander VI in 1494.
The Honours of Scotland, a collection of ceremonial items of immense historical significance, will feature the newly-crafted Elizabeth Sword in honor of the late Queen. This will be placed alongside the Stone of Destiny – a symbol of Scottish nationhood brought to England in the 13th century and returned to Scotland in 1996 – which will make its way to the cathedral for the service.
On this momentous occasion, a 21-gun salute from Edinburgh Castle will echo through the sky followed by a procession leading back to the Palace of Holyroodhouse. The skies will light up with an awe-inspiring performance from the Red Arrows aerobatic team. Joining them at the Cathedral will be Charles’ eldest son and heir Prince William and his wife Kate.
The regalia of Scotland now contains five newly commissioned pieces of music, uniting art and tradition as these meaningful items carry us into a new era.
As King Charles’ coronation parade makes its way down the Royal Mile, it is expected to be met with vocal opposition from those who oppose the monarchy. Recent polls reveal that support for the monarchy is lower in Scotland than in other parts of the United Kingdom.
The question of Scottish independence lingers in the air, with many who favour secession hoping for an elected head of state instead. Staunch anti-monarchist Graham Smith, the CEO of Republic, weighed in on the issue with a sharp statement: “Charles wants to be centre of attention again – but at what cost? Scottish taxpayers will need to bear the cost of this expensive vanity parade.” Smith was arrested during Charles’ coronation ceremonies in London in May.