King Charles in Good Spirits as He Hosts His Largest Indoor Engagement Yet amid Cancer Treatment

King Charles conducted a key forward-facing royal duty for the first time in months following his cancer diagnosis

Published Time: 14.05.2024 - 17:31:09 Modified Time: 14.05.2024 - 17:31:09

King Charles conducted a key forward-facing royal duty for the first time in months following his cancer diagnosis.

On May 14, the King, 75, helmed an investiture ceremony at Windsor Castle where more than 50 recipients were recognized, in what's reported to be his largest indoor engagement to date. King Charles resumed public duties on April 30 following the Buckingham Palace announcement about his health on Feb. 5, and the sovereign spent the following months working behind the scenes and hosting small audiences at the advice of doctors to "postpone public-facing duties" after starting treatment.

The King seemed to be in good spirits at the investiture, where he appointed the Archbishop of Canterbury Justin Welby as a Knight Grand Cross of the Royal Victorian Order on the occasion of the coronation in May 2023. As the most senior bishop in the Church of England, Welby led the ceremony at Westminster Abbey last spring where King Charles and Queen Camilla were symbolically crowned and did the honors of placing the crowns on their heads.

Welby, 68, and the King had a warm exchange upon the presentation, which is the highest class of the Order distributed at the discretion of the monarch. 

Other investees of various honors at the ceremony included the Dean of Westminster, the Very Reverend Dr. David Hoyle, bestselling author Dame Jilly Cooper and Queen Camilla's deputy private secretary Belinda Kim. 

Investitures recognize outstanding achievement, personal bravery or services to the U.K., and the festive ceremonies are held throughout the year to celebrate those named to the New Year Honours List or the sovereign’s Birthday Honours list. Investitures are usually hosted in the Throne Room at Buckingham Palace or the Grand Reception Room at Windsor Castle, with the honors presented by members of the royal family. 

King Charles last conducted an investiture in December 2023, and Princess Anne and Prince William have stepped up in the months since to lead the ceremonies.

King Charles and Pri -

nce William, 41, stepped out for a rare joint engagement on May 13, where the King bestowed the title of Colonel-in-Chief of the Army Air Corps upon his eldest son in a military ceremony at the Army Aviation Centre in Hampshire. 

The Prince of Wales now leads his brother Prince Harry's former regiment, as the Duke of Sussex trained as an Army Air Corps pilot in 2009 before serving with the Corps during his second tour in Afghanistan until 2014.

While the appointment was first announced in August 2023, the outing was significant as the official ceremonial handover.

In conversation with a veteran on at the event on May 13, King Charles shared a side effect he experienced amid his cancer treatment.

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While connecting with British Army veteran Aaron Mapplebeck, King Charles mentioned experiencing a "loss of taste" during his treatment, The Sun reported. Mapplebeck shared that he also faced this issue after undergoing nine rounds of chemotherapy for testicular cancer last February.

When the palace announced the King's return to forward-facing duties on April 26, a spokesperson described his treatment as ongoing and shared a positive sentiment from his doctors.

"His Majesty’s treatment program will continue, but doctors are sufficiently pleased with the progress made so far that The King is now able to resume a number of public-facing duties. Forthcoming engagements will be adapted where necessary to minimize any risks to His Majesty’s continued recovery," a Buckingham Palace spokesperson said.

The palace didn’t disclose when the King’s treatment might be completed.

"It is too early to say, but His Majesty’s medical team are very encouraged by the progress made so far and remain positive about The King’s continued recovery," the spokesperson explained.

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