King Charles and Queen Camilla Are Charmed by Kids Named Charles and Camilla in Northern Ireland
The King and Queen Consort seemed pleased to meet two 8-year-old kids who share their first names
King Charles and Queen Camilla are celebrating the best of Northern Ireland.
On Thursday morning, the King and Queen stepped out in Armagh for the second day of their surprise trip to the country. The visit is historic as Charles and Camilla’s first time in Northern Ireland since their coronation on May 6, and their first official trip out of England since the crowning ceremony.
Charles, 74, and Camilla, 75, kicked off the day with solo outings. The King visited St. Patrick’s Church of Ireland Cathedral to meet with representatives from the Church of Ireland, the Roman Catholic Church, the Presbyterian Church, the Methodist Church and the Irish Council of Churches. There, the Cathedral Choir performed “Irish Blessing” the five church leaders said a special prayer. Charles has long been interested in interfaith relations, and invited leaders from all of Britain’s major faiths to play a role in his crowning ceremony — a historic first, according to CNN.
Outside the cathedral, the King and Queen met schoolchildren — including two students with the same first names! Camilla Nowawakowska and Charles Murray, both 8, festively accessorized with paper crowns to meet the royal couple, which charmed Queen Camilla.
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“Goodness me, isn't that funny, we've got the same names,” she said after the kids introduced themselves, according to the Daily Mail. “You’ve got very smart crowns on. They're a little bit lighter than the one I had on. They look pretty cool with all the jewels.” Evidently impressed, she even brought over her husband to say hello.
For her own solo engagement, Camilla spread her ongoing literacy mission at Armagh Robinson Library, spending time with school children and volunteers from Dementia Friendly Museums. The Queen also got to see Jonathan Swift’s copy of his classic text Gulliver’s Travels.
The couple came back together for a stop at Market Square for a Celebration of Culture. The festivities showcased Ulster-Scots, Irish, Chinese and South Asian cultures, and featured traditional music, song and dance. Charles also connected with reps from his charity The Prince’s Trust, while Camilla chatted with members of the Knit and Natter, which has raised over $86,000 for Breast Cancer and hospice care.
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In a lighthearted exchange, the royals seemed amused to meet characters representing legendary and historical characters associated with Armagh. They also tasted local delicacies and met artisanal food producers and performers plus members of the public.
The King and Queen then traveled west to Enniskillen Castle, where they met people involved in the community, voluntary and heritage sectors in Fermanagh. The royal couple joined kids participating in the “The Kindness Postbox” campaign to write letters to nursing home residents who were also at the castle.
Charles and Camilla stopped a celebratory Big Lunch, an offshoot of the Eden Project intended to “boost community spirit, reduce loneliness and support charities and good causes” by bringing people together with neighbors over a meal. Big Lunches were held around the U.K. during the coronation weekend, and Kate Middleton and Prince William even surprised locals at a lunch near their Windsor home.
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The King also met with reps from volunteer groups who pitched in with the Coronation Big Help Out, before he and Camilla moved to the waterfront. There, they gave a wave to members of the Royal National Lifeboat Institution, which is celebrating its 200th anniversary year.
The Fermanagh’s Young Farmers Society also spoke to the royals and likely found easy rapport, as the couple is known to share a love of gardening and country life.
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