Prince William leaves other senior royals at Balmoral as he heads to Windsor to join Kate and his children ahead of King Charles III’s historic address to the nation
- Princess Anne, Prince Andrew, Prince Edward and Sophie are all expected to stay at Balmoral in Scotland
- King Charles III is heading to London with Camilla after they were driven to Aberdeen Airport this morning
- Prince William is on his way to Windsor to be with his wife Kate and children George, Charlotte and Louis
- Other senior royals will remain at Balmoral – but without Prince Harry who left earlier on at 8.15am today
Prince William has left Balmoral Castle and is travelling back to Windsor to be with his wife Kate Middleton and children Prince George, Princess Charlotte and Prince Louis ahead of the Accession Council tomorrow.
The Duke of Cornwall and Cambridge, as he is now known, will not arrive in London with his father King Charles III – who is heading to London with the Queen Consort, Camilla – but will join him later on. Kensington Palace confirmed William, who is a Privy Counsellor, will attend the Accession Council at St James’s Palace in London.
Other senior royals including Princess Anne, Prince Andrew, Prince Edward and Sophie, Countess of Wessex are all expected to stay at the royal residence at the Scottish Highlands, sources told MailOnline today.
The new King was pictured for the first time this morning since he acceded to the throne, dressed smartly in a suit and tie as he left Balmoral with the Queen Consort on their way to Aberdeen Airport.
Other senior members of the Royal Family will remain at Balmoral – but without Prince Harry who left earlier on at about 8.15am today, having arrived around 12 hours before to join fellow royals who had gathered at the castle.
The Duke of Sussex was seen boarding a British Airways flight at Aberdeen Airport later on in the morning, before arriving at London Heathrow and then being driven to Frogmore Cottage in Windsor where he has been staying.
Harry and his wife Meghan Markle, who were coming to the end of a whistle-stop visit to Europe when the Queen died, are expected to stay in the UK to attend the late monarch’s state funeral, likely be held on September 19.
Charles will now meet with Prime Minister Liz Truss and other senior politicians later today as he becomes head of the Privy Council, while his siblings Andrew, Edward and Anne will stay at Balmoral.
A Buckingham Palace source told MailOnline this morning: ‘King Charles must return to London to attend to matters of state. But the other senior royals will spend a day of quiet reflection at Balmoral Castle.’
Prince William drives Prince Andrew, Prince Edward and Sophie, Countess of Wessex into Balmoral in Scotland last night
King Charles III (left) and Prince Harry (right) at Aberdeen Airport separately today as they travel by plane to London
A vehicle carrying King Charles III and the Queen Consort leaves Balmoral today, following the death of Queen Elizabeth II
The update comes as the nation’s new monarch King Charles III began his poignant journey from Balmoral to London, following the death of his mother the Queen.
The grief-stricken King was glimpsed for the first time since his accession to the throne as he departed Birkhall, his private home on the Balmoral estate, by car at around 11.15am today.
With Camilla, his new Queen Consort, in the front passenger seat, Charles sat in the back, dressed in his mourning clothes of a black suit and tie, looking sombre as he headed to Aberdeen Airport.
Camilla stared straight ahead as they were driven from the Scottish residence, where they had rushed to be at the Queen’s bedside when she fell gravely ill.
The couple stayed overnight at Balmoral, where Queen Elizabeth II died peacefully aged 96 yesterday afternoon. Members of the royal family had made the urgent dash to be with the frail monarch as her health failed.
Her children – Charles, the Princess Royal, the Duke of York and Earl of Wessex – travelled to the castle, as did the Duke of Cornwall and Cambridge, the Countess of Wessex and the Duke of Sussex.
People gather outside Buckingham Palace in London today to pay tribute to Queen Elizabeth II following her death
Mourners gather outside Windsor Castle today following the death of Queen Elizabeth II in Balmoral yesterday
Yeoman Warders are pictured at the Tower of London today, ahead of a Gun Salute to mark the death of Queen Elizabeth II
Camilla, Charles and the Queen stand on the Buckingham Palace balcony following the Queen’s Birthday Parade in June
Senior royals will have duties to perform in Scotland in the coming days when the Queen’s coffin begins its journey back to the capital, but Harry was spotted leaving Balmoral this morning.
The Queen’s coffin placed in Balmoral ballroom
The Queen’s coffin has been placed in the Balmoral ballroom where she danced as a young princess and where she later shared special moments with Prince Philip, to allow her loyal household staff to pay their respects before she begins her final journey back to London.
The coffin is currently in the ballroom, draped in the Royal Standard. It will remain there for two days before it is driven to the Palace of Holyrood House in Edinburgh. It will then be transported back to London later this week.
The ballroom held special memories for the Queen, whose affection for the highlands was well known. It is where she danced at the age of 12 as a young princess at the Ghillies Ball, an annual dance at Balmoral for the staff, which she enthusiastically attended for years.
The annual ball has been a tradition since the 1852, when Queen Victoria and Prince Albert first acquired the estate. It was their way of thanking the staff for their hard work and loyalty and is a tradition that has endured for well over 100 years.
Queen Elizabeth II was known to particularly enjoy the event and would often stay late into the night to celebrate with staff. Videos show her reeling with Prince Philip, the Queen Mother and Charles and Diana in 1991.
Her body will remain at Balmoral for the next two days before being driven to Edinburgh to be placed at the Palace of Holyroodhouse. She will stay there for an additional two days for a lying-in-state of sorts, before eventually being brought back to London for her funeral.
Tributes continue to be paid to the woman described by the Prime Minister as the ‘rock on which modern Britain was built’, with the Dalai Lama expressing his ‘deep sadness’ over the death of the Queen in a letter to the King.
He told Charles: ‘Your mother lived a meaningful life with dignity, grace, a strong sense of service and a warm heart, qualities we all should treasure.’
The Queen’s former homes of Buckingham Palace, Windsor Castle and Balmoral continue to attract thousands of people wanting to pay their respects to the late monarch, with hundreds of bouquets, personal notes and candles being placed in her honour.
Charles has already turned his hand to his duties as monarch despite his grief. He gave the order that a period of ‘Royal Mourning’ for the Queen will be observed from now until seven days after her funeral.
Royal Mourning will be observed by members of the royal family, royal household staff and representatives of the royal Household on official duties, together with troops committed to ceremonial duties.
Royal salutes will be fired in London on Friday at 1pm in Hyde Park by the King’s Troop Royal Horse Artillery, and at the Tower of London by the Honourable Artillery Company, with one round being fired for each year of the Queen’s life.
Flags at royal residences were at half-mast yesterday and will remain half-masted until 8am on the morning after the final day of royal mourning.
The King is expected to address the nation on television this evening, and hold his first audience with Prime Minister Liz Truss.
The PM and senior ministers will attend a public service of remembrance at St Paul’s in central London.
Tomorrow morning, an Accession Council – the formal proclamation of Charles as King – will take place at St James’s Palace in London.
The first public proclamation of the new sovereign will then be read in the open air from the Friary Court balcony at St James’s Palace by the Garter King of Arms.
Charles will hold audiences, and the media will be briefed by the Earl Marshal, who is in charge of the accession and the Queen’s funeral, on the coming days.
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