Queen Consort Camilla wears Elizabeth II's George VI Sapphire tiara

Camilla’s tribute to the Queen: The Queen Consort wears Her late Majesty’s George VI Sapphire tiara at State Banquet

  • Queen Consort Camilla, 75, wore the late Queen Elizabeth II’s George VI Sapphire tiara this evening
  • She joined King Charles III, The Prince of Wales and The Princess of Wales at a State Banquet in London
  • Held in honour of the visiting South African President Cyril Ramaphosa and his wife Dr Tsheop Motepe

The Queen Consort paid tribute to the late Queen Elizabeth II as she attended the luxurious State Banquet held in honour of the visiting South African president tonight.

Camilla, 75, opted for the Her late Majesty’s George VI Sapphire tiara as she joined King Charles III, The Prince of Wales and the Princess of Wales as well as other Royal Family members, for the special occasion at Buckingham Palace. 

The royal looked typically elegant in a full length blue Bruce Oldfield Couture gown which featured sheer lace sleeves which she paired with her show-stopping jewels. 


The Queen Consort (left) paid tribute to the late Queen Elizabeth II (right) as she attended the luxurious State Banquet held in honour of the visiting South African president tonight 

Adding a bit more glitz, Camilla donned a matching blue diamond necklace, drop earrings and bracelet for the banquet.

She donned a royal blue sash as well as the Royal Family Order, made up of a portrait of the Queen on a yellow ribbon. 

Camilla previously wore the electric blue gown when she hosted a dinner in Rwanda with her husband King Charles in June earlier this year. 

Mr Ramaphosa was greeted by more than 1,000 soldiers, 230 horses, seven military bands and two state coaches earlier today – before being an honoured guest at the State Banquet held by the King, Queen Consort and other members of the Royal Family. 

Camilla, 75, opted for the Her late Majesty’s George VI Sapphire tiara as she joined King Charles III , The Prince of Wales and the Princess of Wales as well as other Royal Family members, for the special occasion at Buckingham Palace

 Camilla also donned a royal blue sash as well as the Royal Family Order, made up of a portrait of the Queen on a yellow ribbon

The royal looked typically elegant in a full length blue Bruce Oldfield Couture gown which featured sheer lace sleeves which she paired with her show-stopping jewels

King Charles III (centre) and his wife Camilla, Queen Consort, welcome South African president Cyril Ramaphosa (left) to tonight’s state banquet at Buckingham Palace

King Charles III and Camilla, the Queen Consort, arrive at Buckingham Palace tonight ahead of the a State Banquet for the president of South Africa

Camilla’s choice of sapphire tiara is one of the most glittering in the late Queen’s collection. The George VI sapphire tiara was added to the sapphire set – started by her father on her wedding day – in 1963. Other pieces include a necklace, bracelet, earrings and three rings. 

It began life as a necklace, bought for Princess Louise of Belgium in the late 19th century. A scandalous figure with a string of lovers, Louise ended up estranged from her family and in dire financial straits.

She sold her jewels, including the necklace, which was turned into a tiara, to pay debts. It’s not known exactly how it ended up in the royal vault.

Elsewhere this evening, the Princess of Wales put her best fashion foot forward in a gem embellished white gown, paired with the Cambridge lover’s knot tiara. 

The event offered a lavish menu of two mains: grilled brill with wild mushrooms, truffles and sorrel sauce or ballotine of Windsor Pheasant filled with artichokes, quince compote and port sauce.

The Prince and Princess of Wales arrive for the State Banquet for South African president Cyril Ramaphosa at Buckingham Palace

It is a departure from the banquets of the late Queen Elizabeth II, who often favoured Balmoral venison or lamb from one of the other royal estates when hosting foreign dignitaries.

Earlier today Charles III laid on a Guard of Honour for the South African president before joining him in a golden carriage ride to Buckingham Palace as he held his first state visit as King.

William and Kate were part of events for the first time, travelling to a luxury hotel in central London to meet Cyril Ramaphosa and accompany him to Horse Guards Parade for the start of the ceremonial welcome.

There, the monarch and Queen Consort shook hands with the president at the Royal Pavilion ahead of the glamorous state banquet.

President Cyril Ramaphosa of South Africa, King Charles, Camilla,  Prince William, and Catherine attended the Ceremonial Welcome earlier today

President Cyril Ramaphosa of South Africa, addresses MPs and peers in the Royal Gallery at the Palace of Westminster 

The South African national anthem played shortly after Mr Ramaphosa’s arrival, while the Guard of Honour gave a Royal Salute.

National figures had gathered in the royal pavilion for the pomp and pageantry of the ceremonial welcome with Prime Minister Rishi Sunak joined by senior members of the Cabinet, as well as the Lord Mayor of London, Nicholas Lyons, and the Defence Chiefs of Staff.

A procession leading a state carriage containing Britain’s King Charles, Queen Consort Camilla and South African President Cyril Ramaphosa back to Buckingham Palace

King Charles and The Queen Consort, Camilla, formally welcome the South African President Cyril Ramaphosa (pictured) at the Royal Pavilion on Horse Guards Parade

(left to right) The Queen Consort and the Prince and Princess of Wales as they inspect a Guard of Honour during the ceremonial welcome for President Cyril Ramaphosa of South Africa’s State Visit to the UK

More than 1,000 soldiers and over 230 horses took part in the ceremonial event and waiting on the parade ground were two immaculate lines of Foot Guards from Number 7 Company The Coldstream Guards.

Nearby in their gleaming breast plates and plumed helmets were the Sovereign’s Escort of the Household Cavalry Mounted Regiment – Life Guards and Blues and Royals, commanded by Major Robert Perera of the Blues and Royals.

Mr Ramaphosa then joined Charles and Camilla as well as the Prince and Princess of Wales for a carriage procession along The Mall.

Camilla, Queen Consort of the United Kingdom and King Charles III travel in State Carriage to Buckingham Palace following the welcome ceremony for the South African President Cyril Ramaphosa

Camilla, Queen Consort, King Charles III and South African President, Cyril Ramaphosa arrive at the Grand Entrance of Buckingham Palace during a state visit

King Charles III and Camilla, Queen Consort show South African President Cyril Ramaphosa items, including a photograph of President Mandela and Queen Elizabeth II, displayed as part of the Royal Collection

King Charles III and Camilla, Queen Consort show South African President Cyril Ramaphosa items, including a photograph of President Mandela and Queen Elizabeth II, displayed as part of the Royal Collection

Upon reaching the Palace, they were met by a second Guard of Honour found by 1st Battalion Coldstream Guards, while at the Tower of London, a 62-round gun salute was fired by the Honourable Artillery Company regiment to mark the President’s visit.

Following a private lunch at the Palace, the King invited Mr Ramaphosa to view an exhibition in the Picture Gallery of items from the Royal Collection relating to South Africa.

The President then visited Westminster Abbey, where he will laid a wreath at the Tomb of the Unknown Warrior, and took a tour, which included the memorial stone for Nelson Mandela, the South African President between 1994 and 1999.

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