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Iconic moments on Buckingham Palace's balcony: from royal wedding kisses to Prince Louis' antics

The iconic balcony has seen many pivotal moments including Jubilee celebrations and the coronation


Split image of the Queen and Prince Philip waving and Prince Louis grimacing© Getty Images
Matthew Moore
Online News Writer & Diversity and Inclusion Lead
June 22, 2024
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Whether it's Jubilee celebrations or royal weddings or Trooping the Colour, an appearance on the Buckingham Palace balcony is pretty much a guarantee.

The location is the perfect venue for the royal family to interact with their subjects and with its decades of history, the balcony has no doubt played host to several iconic moments. From Prince William and Princess Kate's wedding kiss, Winston Churchill appearing alongside the royals following World War II, or Prince Louis' cheeky antics, the balcony has seen it all.

WATCH: Prince Louis dances during Trooping the Colour ceremony

Take a trip through the archive to relive some of the best moments from the Buckingham Palace balcony…

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Black-and-white photo of a young Queen and girl pointing out over Buckingham Palace© Fox Photos

Future Queen – 1936

This is the earliest picture we can find of Queen Elizabeth II appearing on the iconic balcony. The then Princess Elizabeth (left) would have been ten at the time of the photo and is seen wearing white gloves.

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The Queen Mother, the Queen, Princess Margaret and King George VI on the Buckingham Palace balcony after the latter's coronation© Keystone

King George's coronation – 1937

Buckingham Palace has seen several coronations, including that of the late Queen's father, King George VI. The newly crowned monarch is seen surrounded by his family as he waves at the assembled crowds.

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The Queen, The Queen Mother, Winston Churchill, King George VI and Princess Margaret waving from Buckingham Palace© Reg Speller

Victory wave – 1945

Following the end of World War II, the then Prime Minister Winston Churchill was invited by the royals to join them from Buckingham Palace's balcony. The statesman would later become Elizabeth's first prime minister.

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The Queen and Prince Philip waving from Buckingham Palace on their wedding day© Keystone

Elizabeth and Philip's wedding – 1947

It's become a tradition for newly married royal couples to greet the public on Buckingham Palace's balcony. And following their 1947 nuptials, Princess Elizabeth and Prince Philip waved to the assembled crowd.

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The Queen pointing to the sky next to King Charles© William Vanderson

Charles makes a scene – 1951

Young royals have been stealing the show on Buckingham Palace's balcony for decades. In this 1951 photo, Princess Elizabeth can be seen trying to get the attention of the then Prince Charles ahead of the signature flypast.

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The Queen with King Charles, Princess Anne and Prince Philip on her coronation day© Fox Photos

The Queen's coronation – 1952

In 1952, the Palace's balcony saw a new monarch, with Queen Elizabeth II making her debut. The royal beams with pride as she's joined by her family.

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A young King Charles saluting on the balcony of Buckingham Palace© Reg Speller

Royal salute – 1953

Charles once again was the centre of attention in 1953 when the young royal gave a very powerful salute for the gathered crowd. His sister, Princess Anne, is in a bonnet.

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Princess Alexandra, Princess Marina, Princess Alice, the Queen Mother, Antony Armstrong-Jones and Princess Margaret in black on a balcony in Buckingham Palace© Albert McCabe

Remembrance Sunday – 1960

The balcony doesn't only see jubilant scenes, in 1960 it played host to less senior members of the royal family during the Remembrance Sunday ceremony. Among those on the balcony are the Queen Mother, Princess Margaret and Princess Alexandra.

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The Queen and Prince Philip carrying a baby Prince Edward© Fox Photos

Edward's debut – 1964

The late Queen's youngest son, Prince Edward, made his Buckingham Palace balcony debut when he was very young indeed. The monarch held her sleeping son, who was swaddled in a blanket.

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Princess Diana and King Charles kissing© Keystone

Charles and Diana wed – 1981

Princess Diana and the then Prince Charles had the wedding of the decade in 1981 and after their Westminster Abbey nuptials the couple headed to Buckingham Palace to greet throngs of spectators.

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Prince Philip standing next to a pregnant Princess Diana© Tim Graham

Pregnant Diana – 1982

The late Princess of Wales was always a ray of sunshine on the iconic balcony, and this was certainly the case in 1982 when she arrived in a green dress while heavily pregnant with her first child, Prince William.

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A young Zara Tindall, Prince William and Lady Davina Windsor on the Buckingham Palace balcony© Anwar Hussein

Young royals steal the show – 1985

The young royals were out in force in 1985, and here Prince William, Zara Tindall and Lady Davina Windsor all looked adorable as they peered out of the balcony.

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A young Prince William making the Queen, Prince Philip, Princess Anne, Prince Charles and Princess Diana laugh© Tim Graham

Giggling Queen – 1986

The cheeky antics of the young royals have always entertained other members of the family, and here the late Queen can be seen giggling as a young Prince William entertains her.

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Princess Diana carrying Prince Harry as he pulls a face© Princess Diana Archive

Cheeky Harry – 1988

Prince Harry was incredibly cheeky during some of his early appearances at Buckingham Palace and as he was held aloft by his mum, Princess Diana, he couldn't help but stick his tongue out.

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Prince William covering his face with Prince Philip, Prince Charles and Princess Diana standing behind him© Tim Graham

Head in their hands – 1988

It wasn't just Harry who was a cheeky chappie in 1988, as Prince William could be seen burying his head in his hands ahead of the flypast.

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The Queen pointing at  King Charles on the Buckingham Palace balcony© Tim Graham

A royal telling off – 1990

An amusing moment happened in 1990, when the late Queen was seen pointing her finger at her eldest son, Prince Charles, perhaps giving him a royal telling off.

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Poppy petals falling in front of members of the royal family and Buckingham Palace© Matt Cardy

A royal surprise – 2005

It's not often that the royals are left surprised, but they were as awestruck as everyone else in 2005 as Britain marked the 60th anniversary of the end of World War II. Alongside the traditional flypast, hundreds of poppies were also released. Prince Philip in particular looks amazed at the sight.

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Prince Harry and Prince William in suits; Harry is pointing at William© Tim Graham

Brotherly bond – 2006

Prince William and Prince Harry have had their ups and downs during their relationship, but they enjoyed a lighter moment in 2007 as seen here.

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The Queen holding her hand out to check for rain stood next to Prince Philip© Max Mumby/Indigo

Queen of weather – 2007

As always, the British weather is one of the most unpredictable things out there, so the late Queen served as her own weather forecaster in 2007, when she held her gloved hand out to check for rain.

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Kate Middleton and Prince William kissing with Grace Van Cutsem covering her ears© Anwar Hussein

William and Kate's kiss – but bridesmaid steals show – 2011

It was Prince William and Kate's turn to kiss on the iconic balcony following their 2011 wedding. However, it was the pair's bridesmaid, Grace van Cutsem, who stole the show with her expressions as the bride and groom locked lips.

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The Queen speaking with Kate Middleton and Prince William at her Diamond Jubilee© Dan Kitwood

Diamond Jubilee – 2012

The Queen's Diamond Jubilee celebrations were incredible and were topped off with an appearance from the monarch on the balcony. In this photo, she can be seen bonding with her granddaughter-in-law, the then Duchess of Cambridge.

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A pregnant Kate Middleton in a baby pink dress© Max Mumby/Indigo

Pregnant Kate – 2013

The Queen's birthday celebrations were the last public appearance for Kate ahead of giving birth to her first child, Prince George. The royal looked splendid in a pink outfit that hugged her growing bump.

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Prince William carrying a baby Prince George© Chris Jackson

Future King's debut – 2015

Young Prince George made his debut at Trooping the Colour when he was just one! The future King of Britain had already perfected his wave as he left in the arms of his father.

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Savannah Phillips covering Prince George's mouth© Karwai Tang

Savannah Phillips – 2018

Savannah Phillips, the eldest child of Peter and Autumn Phillips, seemed to have hands full with both Prince George and Princess Charlotte, and she even amusingly covered up her cousin's mouth during the proceedings.

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The Queen standing next to Meghan Markle© Chris Jackson

The Queen and Meghan – 2018

The monarch is joined by numerous members of their family during their balcony appearances. In 2018, to mark the 100th anniversary of the RAF, the late Queen was side-by-side with the Duchess of Sussex for the flypast.

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Prince Louis shouting and covering his ears while standing next to the Queen© DANIEL LEAL

Too loud for Louis – 2022

Prince Louis has become the undisputed King of the Balcony Moment, and it all started in 2022 when the flypast proved to be a little too loud for the young royal. The prince was seen covering his ears and shouting out, much to the amusement of his great-grandmother.

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King Charles and Queen Camilla waving from thr Buckingham Palace balcony© OLI SCARFF

Coronation – 2023

King Charles made sure to follow tradition when it came to his coronation by making an appearance on the balcony. Despite the rainy weather, thousands still turned out to greet their new King.

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Kate Middleton looking at Prince William© Max Mumby/Indigo

Kate's return – 2024

The Princess of Wales stayed out of the public eye during her cancer treatment, but to the delight of royal fans, she reappeared for the King's birthday parade in 2024.

RELATED: Prince William's hilarious balcony moment with Prince Louis you might have missed

MORE: Queen Camilla's three-word exchange with King Charles after appearing to hurry him off the balcony at Trooping the Colour

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