Queen Elizabeth uses jubilee to support Camilla

London UK - Queen Elizabeth II used her Platinum Jubilee this weekend - marking a record 70 years on the British throne - to state that Camilla, the wife of Prince Charles, should have the title Queen Consort when the time comes for Charles to take the throne.

Upon her Platinum Jubilee, Queen Elizabeth II (l.) has officially announced that Camilla Duchess of Cornwall (r.) should "be known as Queen Consort."
Upon her Platinum Jubilee, Queen Elizabeth II (l.) has officially announced that Camilla Duchess of Cornwall (r.) should "be known as Queen Consort."  © IMAGO/Shutterstock

The move shapes the future of the monarchy on her historic milestone.

In what observers called a "hugely significant intervention," the momarch expressed her "sincere wish" that Camilla will be known as Queen Consort when Charles, also known as the Prince of Wales, becomes King.

As she reached her 70th year on the throne, Elizabeth II, in the twilight years of her reign, set out her hopes for her daughter-in-law, once a royal mistress and now certain to be called Queen and crowned at Charles's side.

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Elizabeth II, using the rarest of Jubilees to put her affairs in order on a public platform, also shared her succession support for her eldest son as monarch.

The 95-year-old said in the written message on Saturday: "I would like to express my thanks to you all for your support. I remain eternally grateful for, and humbled by, the loyalty and affection that you continue to give me."

"And when, in the fullness of time, my son Charles becomes King, I know you will give him and his wife Camilla the same support that you have given me; and it is my sincere wish that, when that time comes, Camilla will be known as Queen Consort as she continues her own loyal service."

When Charles married Camilla in 2005, the couple announced she "intended" to be known as "Princess Consort" despite having a right to the title of Queen - the first time this has happened in British history. It was seen as a move to be sensitive to Charles' first wife, Diana. It's the same reason Camilla doesn't use the title of Princess of Wales, Diana's title before her death.

The 73-year-old, and Camilla, who is Duchess of Cornwall, were "touched and honored" by the Queen's gesture, Clarence House said.

The prince will make his own public declaration on Sunday celebrating his mother's Jubilee.

Camilla's "journey to queen-in-waiting is complete"

Experts say it is an "extraordinary message" for the Queen (r.) to support her daughter-in-law Camilla (l.), who was publically blamed for the breakdown of the prince's marriage to Princess Diana.
Experts say it is an "extraordinary message" for the Queen (r.) to support her daughter-in-law Camilla (l.), who was publically blamed for the breakdown of the prince's marriage to Princess Diana.  © Collage: IMAGO/i Images & Matrix

The Queen, who acceded to the throne on February 6, 1952 upon the death of her father George VI, also renewed her lifelong pledge of duty, despite approaching her 96th birthday this year.

"As we mark this anniversary, it gives me pleasure to renew to you the pledge I gave in 1947 that my life will always be devoted to your service," she said.

She also paid tribute to her late husband, the Duke of Edinburgh, for the sacrifices he made as consort, thanked her family for their support, and made reference to the Queen Mother's role as a Queen Consort.

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Camilla will automatically take the same role as consort when Charles becomes king.

The Queen wrote: "I am fortunate to have had the steadfast and loving support of my family. I was blessed that in Prince Philip I had a partner willing to carry out the role of consort and unselfishly make the sacrifices that go with it."

"It is a role I saw my own mother perform during my father's reign."

Camilla would technically have been Queen when Charles acceded to the throne, and only legislation would have prevented it.

Much has changed in the years since Charles, who aides once said had no intention of remarrying, wed his long-term love.

Camilla was blamed for the breakdown of the prince's marriage to Diana, Princess of Wales, and when news of their affair first came to light, she faced vitriolic criticism.

Yet now, with the Queen setting out her wishes and calling for people to support Charles and Camilla, the duchess will undoubtedly be crowned alongside the prince at his coronation when the time comes.

Former BBC royal correspondent Peter Hunt said: "This is the most extraordinary message. The Queen is ensuring the transition, when it comes, to her son as king is as seamless and trouble free as possible."

"She's future-proofing an institution she's served for seventy years. And for Camilla, the journey from being the third person in a marriage to queen-in-waiting, is complete."

The royal family will host historic UK-wide celebrations for the queen's Platinum Jubilee from Thursday, June 2 to Sunday, June 5.

Cover photo: Collage: IMAGO/i Images & Matrix

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