King Charles III plans to use his birthday this year to shine a spotlight on the United Kingdom’s (UK) food shortages and waste with the launch of his new food aid scheme, the Coronation Food Project.
This project will be launched on Tuesday, on the monarch’s 75th birthday, during a visit to a surplus food distribution center and aims to set up similar distribution centers to bridge the gap between the country’s surplus food and increasing hunger.
There is apparently also a deeper meaning behind the monarch’s chosen birthday initiative.
When the then Prince Charles was born on November 14, 1948, there was still food rationing in Britain due to the impact of the Second World War.
A gift food package was provided to every family that had a child on the same day to celebrate the birth of the then Princess Elizabeth’s first child. These packages included, among other things, soap, butter, powdered eggs, honey, marmalade, bacon and beef.
“Food needs are as real and urgent a problem as food waste – and if a way can be found to bridge the gap between them, then it will address two problems at once. To celebrate my 75th birthday in this coronation year, it is my greatest hope that the Coronation Food Project will find practical ways to do just that,” the king said in an official statement about his latest project.
An animation promoting the Coronation Food Project will be shown on the digital billboard at Piccadilly Circus in London on Tuesday evening, reports the BBC.
On Tuesday, the king will play host to 400 nurses and midwives at Buckingham Palace as part of this year’s 75th anniversary celebrations for the state-run National Health Service (NHS).
Buckingham Palace has announced that a gun salute will be fired in London and across the UK on Tuesday to celebrate the British head of state’s birthday, after which he will hold a private dinner with his closest friends and family at his London residence, Clarence House.
RNews reported earlier that the king’s youngest son, Prince Harry, will not join him this year when he blows out the cherries for his birthday.
The British Sunday Times recently reported that Harry and his wife Meghan, still known as the Duke and Duchess of Sussex, turned down an invitation to this celebration.
They currently reside in California in the US after finally stepping down from their royal duties in 2019.
However, Ashley Hansen, Meghan and Harry’s spokesperson, told the New York Post said they had received no invitation from the monarchy to join the king’s 75th birthday celebrations.
The news comes amid the ongoing feud between Prince Harry and members of the royal family following the release of his sensational memoir, Save, in which he makes various statements about his father, brother and other members of the royal family.
The BBC however, claims that “well-placed sources” suggest that the American duke will indeed make a birthday phone call to his father.
You may not have known this about King Charles III:
- The then Prince of Wales was the first royal baby to be born in Buckingham Palace in the 20th century. His mother, the late Queen Elizabeth II, was not a close heir to the throne at the time of her birth and therefore did not grow up in Buckingham Palace.
- The king is very musical and can play the guitar, piano and cello.
- He presented a special afternoon weather forecast during a visit to BBC Scotland’s headquarters in Pacific Quay, Glasgow.
- An endangered Ecuadorian tree frog is named after the monarch.
- As a former Prince of Wales – a title bestowed by British monarchs on their eldest living son – he learned to speak Welsh.
Sources: AFP, BBC, The New York Post, Daily Mail, Sunday Times, The Guardian.