King Charles III has paid tribute to his mother Queen Elizabeth II, after being formally proclaimed as sovereign.
The 73-year-old monarch called his mother's death an "irreplaceable loss" as he lauded her "unequalled reign", during his first speech after being proclaimed as sovereign at the Accession Council on Saturday (10.09.22).
King Charles said: "It is my most sorrowful duty to announce to you the death of my beloved mother the Queen. I know how deeply you and the entire nation and I think I may say the whole world sympathises with me in the irreparable loss we have all suffered. It is the greatest consolation to me to know of the sympathy expressed by so many to my sister and my brothers and as such overwhelming affection and support should be extended to our whole family in our loss. To all of us as a family.
“As to this kingdom and to the wider family of nations of which it is a part, my mother gave an example of lifelong love and of selfless service. My mother’s reign was unequalled in its duration, its dedication and its devotion. Even as we grieve we give thanks for this most faithful life. I am deeply aware of this great inheritance and of the duties and heavy responsibilities of sovereignty which have now passed to me. In taking up these responsibilities I shall strive to follow the inspiring example I have been set in upholding constitutional government and to seek the peace, harmony and prosperity of the peoples of these islands, and of the commonwealth realms and territories across the world. In this purpose I know that I shall be upheld by the affection and loyalty of the peoples whose sovereign I have been called upon to be, and in the discharge of these duties, I will be guided by the council of their elected parliaments."
In his speech, Charles also paid tribute to his wife Camilla, Queen Consort of the United Kingdom, praising her for her support.
He said: "In all this I am profoundly encouraged by the constant support of my beloved wife. I take this opportunity to confirm my willingness and intention to continue the tradition of surrendering the hereditary revenues, including the crown estate to the government for the benefit of all in return for the sovereign grant which supports my official duties as head of state and head of nation.
"In carrying out the heavy task that has been laid upon me, to which I dedicate what remains to me of my life. I pray for the guidance and help of almighty God."
As heir apparent, Charles automatically became King after the death of Queen Elizabeth on Thursday afternoon (08.09.22) in Balmoral, Scotland, but the Accession Council was called as soon as possible to make the formal announcement.
The ceremony - which was televised live for the first time in history - opened with Lord President Penny Mordaunt, who said: "My lords, it is my sad duty to inform you that her most gracious majesty, Queen Elizabeth the second has passed away on Thursday the 8th of September 2022 at Balmoral Castle."
Charles was not present for the first part of the ceremony as he was proclaimed King by the clerk of the council.
The proclamation was then signed by Privy Councillors including William, the Prince of Wales, Camilla, the Queen Consort, Prime Minister Liz Truss, Archbishop of Canterbury Justin Welby and Mordaunt.