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No 10 considering ‘all options’ over coronation bank holiday

The King’s coronation will take place on Saturday, May 6, 2023 and the Government is “carefully considering” what to do about a bank holiday.

12 October 2022

The King’s coronation could be marked with a bank holiday as Downing Street indicated it was keeping an open mind on the issue.

The ceremony will be held on Saturday May 6 next year, with the Queen Consort being crowned alongside Charles.

The Government is considering all options, including creating an extra day off or moving the scheduled May 1 bank holiday to May 8 to give people a long weekend to mark the occasion.

The coronation will take place in Westminster Abbey, eight months after the monarch’s accession and the death of the Queen.

There have been calls from some MPs for the May bank holiday at the start of the month to be moved to coincide with the coronation weekend or for an additional bank holiday to be announced.

In response, the Prime Minister’s official spokesman said: “Obviously this will be a historic event. We are carefully considering our plans. All options remain on the table.”

Labour backed moving the May bank holiday to coincide with the King’s coronation.

Leader Sir Keir Starmer’s spokesman said: “That would certainly be a good way for the country to be able to celebrate the coronation.

“Moving the May bank holiday that there is for that weekend would be a good idea.”

Royal visit to Aberdeenshire
The King and the Queen Consort (Andrew Milligan/PA)

It is understood that the ceremony will include the same core elements of the traditional service, which has retained a similar structure for more than 1,000 years, while also recognising the spirit of our times.

Charles’s coronation is expected to be on a smaller scale and shorter, with suggestions that it could last just one hour rather than more than three.

It is expected to be more inclusive of multi-faith Britain than past coronations but will be an Anglican service.

Guest numbers will be reduced from 8,000 to around 2,000, with peers expected to wear suits and dresses instead of ceremonial robes, and a number of rituals, such as the presentation of gold ingots, axed.

Coronations have not traditionally been held on a weekend, with the late Queen’s taking place on a Tuesday.

Business Secretary Jacob Rees-Mogg dismissed suggestions the ceremony would be a cut-price affair, saying the coronation must be “sufficiently dignified”.

“Nobody is talking about a coronation that will cost billions of pounds,” he told Sky News.

“I hope we see a coronation that is sufficiently dignified for our sovereign. This is a one-off cost.

“The last one was for a coronation for a reign of 70 years. So, this is not something that happens often, it needs to be done properly.”

The Palace said the ceremony will be “rooted in longstanding traditions and pageantry” but also “reflect the monarch’s role today and look towards the future”.

Charles will be anointed with holy oil, receive the orb, coronation ring and sceptre, be crowned with the majestic St Edward’s Crown and blessed during the historic ceremony.

Camilla will also be anointed with holy oil and crowned, just like the Queen Mother was when she was crowned Queen in 1937.

Guest lists have yet to be confirmed for the spectacle, including whether or not the Duke and Duchess of Sussex will be invited or be able to travel from California to attend.

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