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King Charles and Queen Camilla mark Queen Elizabeth II's death anniversary at church service

Queen Elizabeth II passed away at age 96 on 8 September 2022

King Charles wearing a kilt, walking up the stairs to attend a church service
Danielle Stacey
Danielle StaceyOnline Royal CorrespondentLondon
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The King and Queen attended a private church service to mark the one-year anniversary of the death of Queen Elizabeth II.

Charles and Camilla, who are currently staying at the Balmoral estate in Aberdeenshire, stepped out at nearby Crathie Kirk for the poignant event at the church where the late Queen worshipped.

The King, dressed in a red tartan kilt, and the Queen, in a blue day dress and cardigan, made the short journey by car from his Scottish estate.  

The couple were joined by the King's cousins, Lady Sarah Chatto and the 2nd Earl of Snowdon. 

The Earl was accompanied by his daughter Lady Margarita Armstrong-Jones, and Lady Sarah by her husband Daniel and children Samuel and Arthur.

A small group of Balmoral estate workers and members of the public gathered close to the church whose minister is the Rev Kenneth MacKenzie.

Some of the men were dressed in kilts and a number of the women wore tartan in the bright autumn sunshine, and were joined by a handful of pupils from Crathie Primary School.

King Charles going up the stairs to attend church in Balmoral© Alamy
The monarch paid tribute to his late mother on Friday, shared a picture of her from the Royal Collection

The event would have been a deeply personal moment for the King, who ascended the throne when his mother died peacefully last year at Balmoral on 8 September, aged 96, after reigning for 70 years.

The Rev Kenneth Mackenzie, minister of Crathie Kirk, who officiated at the event, said: “It was a simple reflective time, a time where we were able to give thanks for the life of the late Queen and recognise the poignancy of this day for that family and this community, as well as the nation and Commonwealth.

“I think that those of us that did get to see the Queen in different situations, but particularly up here, felt it today, were reminded of the loss.

Queen Camilla walking to the church entrance wearing a blue dress and cardigan© Alamy
Queen Camilla was dressed in a blue day dress and cardigan

“But we were also glad, just as the family were able to gather here last year, some members of the family were able to be here.

“And wherever they might be, in their own homes or wherever, I’m glad that people will have the opportunity to reflect and gives some thanks for the life of the Queen.”

King and Queen leave church service at Crathie Kirk© Getty
Queen Camilla was given a posy of wild flowers

It comes after Buckingham Palace released a touching tribute from the monarch, in which he said: "In marking the first anniversary of Her late Majesty's death and my Accession, we recall with great affection her long life, devoted service and all she meant to so many of us. 

"I am deeply grateful, too, for the love and support that has been shown to my wife and myself during this year as we do our utmost to be of service to you all. Charles R."

Samuel and Arthur Chatto shaking hands with the priest as they arrive at church© Alamy
Samuel and Arthur Chatto, children of Sarah Chatto, were also in attendance

The palace also shared a photograph of the late Queen, personally chosen by the King, which was taken by Cecil Beaton in 1968.

Elizabeth II, then aged 42, is captured in her Garter robes and wearing the diamond Grand Duchess Vladimir’s Tiara, with its pearl setting.

WATCH: The late Queen's finest family moments

Later today, the Prince and Princess of Wales will also attend a church service at St Davids Cathedral in Wales. Prince William and Kate paid a personal tribute to the late Queen on X, formerly known as Twitter, which read: “Today we remember the extraordinary life and legacy of Her Late Majesty Queen Elizabeth. We all miss you. W & C.”

At the WellChild Awards in London on Thursday night, the Duke of Sussex also paid tribute to his late grandmother saying: “I know exactly one year on that she is looking down on all of us tonight, happy we’re together, continuing to spotlight such an incredible community.”

Princess Eugenie shared a previously unseen image of the late Queen, showing grandmother and granddaughter sitting together on a bench. Her message read:  "Thinking of you today. Missing you so much but remembering what a life of service, love and dedication to everyone and to your family, who loved you so very much." 

In the first episode of HELLO!'s A Right Royal Podcast, writer and broadcaster Gyles Brandreth and photographer Julian Calder share their favourite memoires of the late Queen. Listen here...

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