King Charles and Queen Camilla visit Armagh and Enniskillen

  • Published 25 May 2023

The King and Queen met eight year olds Camilla Nowawakowska and Charles Murray outside the cathedral

The King and Queen met another Charles and Camilla as they concluded their two-day visit to Northern Ireland in counties Armagh and Fermanagh.

The royal couple greeted primary school children who had been waiting outside St Patrick's Cathedral in Armagh.

Among them was Camilla Nowawakowska, wearing a crepe-paper replica of her own crown.

Standing next to Camilla was Charles Murray, who was sporting a purple paper crown decorated with shiny stickers.

When the two children told the Queen their first names, she said: "Goodness me, isn't that funny.

"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."

Charles was then called over and shook hands with the two children.

  • IN PICTURES: King and Queen visit Northern Ireland

The royal couple, who have since left Northern Ireland, had just met the main Christian denominations at the Anglican St Patrick's Cathedral.

Queen Camilla also met children at Armagh Robinson Library as part of her campaign to encourage reading.

Later, they met local community groups many of whom had taken part in the Coronation Big Help Out.

King Charles III (left) with Dean of Armagh, the Very Revd Shane Forster, during his visit to St Patrick's Cathedral in Armagh

Among those to give readings at the cathedral service were Church of Ireland Archbishop of Armagh and Primate of all Ireland Rev John McDowell and Roman Catholic Archbishop of Armagh and Primate of all Ireland Rev Eamon Martin.

The other denominations represented at the service were the Presbyterian Church and the Methodist Church.

At the library, the Queen viewed Jonathan Swift's own, annotated, copy of his book Gulliver's Travels, during her visit to the library.

Children from Drelincourt primary school, volunteers from the library and representatives from Dementia NI, all of whom use the library regularly, were among those meeting the Queen.

She said they were lucky to have access to the historical books in the library.

The royal couple then made their way to Market Theatre Square to see a celebration of culture.

Queen Camilla looking at a large model of St Patrick

Ulster-Scots, Irish, Chinese and South Asian cultures featured their traditional music, song and dance.

'Greatest pleasure'

The King and Queen also met characters representing legendary and historical characters associated with Armagh, sampled local delicacies and met artisanal food producers, as well as speaking to the crowds gathered.

As the couple joined the Lord Mayor of Armagh Paul Greenfield on stage, King Charles addressed the crowd and thanked the community for its hospitality.

"I did just want to say before we leave that it's been the greatest pleasure to join you here today," he said.

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"I realise it was 23 years ago since I was last here, and I think opened The Market Place building, which I'm so pleased to see is still going strong and I hope making a huge difference to Armagh.

"But if I may say so it's been particularly special to meet so many of you today, also a large number of school children whose exams, I suspect, we have totally disrupted."

In the afternoon, the pair made their way to Enniskillen Castle where they met representatives from across the community, voluntary and heritage sectors in Fermanagh in celebration of the Coronation.

Charles greets schoolchildren in Enniskillen

They were entertained by a special joint performance of Irish and Scottish dancers accompanied by traditional musicians.

The King and Queen were presented with a Coronation Basket made by Belleek Pottery.

Queen speaking with children in Enniskillen

Around a thousand people who had gathered outside the castle were rewarded by a royal walkabout with the King and Queen spending time shaking hands and talking to the crowd.

The King and Queen also went to Lough Erne's waterfront where they met representatives of the RNLI who marked their 200th anniversary.

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  • King Charles III

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Charles and Camilla

King Charles and Queen Camilla have made their first official visit outside England since their coronation earlier this month - a two-day trip to Northern Ireland.

It was the 41st visit by Charles to Northern Ireland, as prince and king.

Here is the story of their visit in pictures.

King Charles and Queen Camilla visit to a newly-created Coronation Garden in Newtownabbey,

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royal visit enniskillen

A look back on the Queen’s historic visit to Enniskillen in 2012

It was the first time that the Queen had entered a Roman Catholic Church

  • 18:57, 8 SEP 2022
  • Updated 19:04, 8 SEP 2022

royal visit enniskillen

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An historic moment for Queen Elizabeth II came in Enniskillen of all places in 2012, when she made a famous walk from St Macartin's Cathedral into St Michael’s church in the town.

It was the first time that the Queen had entered a Roman Catholic Church, in a major symbol of peace and reconciliation in the Co Fermanagh town.

Read more: The Queen has died at her home in Balmoral

The event took place to mark the 25th anniversary of the Enniskillen bomb, with both members of clergy coming together to welcome the Queen with church services.

The Queen and Prince Philip arrived into St Angelo Airport in Enniskillen on a typical grey Fermanagh day before making their way into Enniskillen town.

Royal fans lined the streets of the town to welcome them, with thousands in the town delighted to see the Queen. That was all despite the heavy rainfall which set upon the town.

Coordinating the visits to the two Churches were Canon Peter O'Reilly, from St Michael's Roman Catholic Church, and the Very Rev Kenny Hall, Dean of St Macartin's Cathedral.

It was a historic moment in which leaders of the two faiths in the town co-operated to deliver a welcome to the Queen.

royal visit enniskillen

Speaking at the time, Canon O'Reilly said: "My reading of the significance of today is that it is an expression of the unity that there is in this place - a Fermanagh welcome, a gracious Queen, a lovely lady."

The Rt Rev Hall said it was about sending a message that we are all from ‘one community’.

“We have worked together to make this a success. And what we are really sending out is a message that we really are one community,” Rt Rev Hall said.

royal visit enniskillen

The Royals also made a visit to the nearby South West Acute Hospital, where the Queen received flowers from local school children.

The visit to Enniskillen came a day before another symbolic moment, a meeting between former IRA commander and Sinn Fein politician Martin McGuinness.

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