From Kate and William’s wedding to VE Day in 1945, the Buckingham Palace balcony appearance is always everyone’s favourite picture-perfect highlight from any royal landmark moment. And the Queen didn’t disappoint the thousands of people who’d gathered along the Mall for her Platinum Jubilee celebrations on Thursday as she waved to the crowds and saluted the soldiers marching in the Trooping the Colour before the RAF’s red, white and blue flypast.
To celebrate her seventieth year on the throne, the Queen was joined on the balcony by a selection of royals for the spectacle. And, as usual, the kids stole the show. Four-year-old Prince Louis (wearing Prince William's hand-me-downs) instantly became a viral Twitter sensation as he screamed and covered his ears at the noise of the planes, after already being told by his mum to take his thumb out of his mouth. Meanwhile, Charlotte looked fantastically nonplussed as the nation’s best airborne salute took place overhead. But who else was invited to join the Queen on the balcony for the Platinum Jubilee? And where were the royals who weren’t?
Who was on the balcony with the Queen?
This is the first time any UK monarch has reached the Platinum Jubilee milestone and the big day makes Elizabeth II the third-longest reigning monarch ever in the world. So, it was a big honour to join her on the balcony for this momentous moment.
The Queen was joined by 17 key members of the royal family to watch the flypast. For the appearance, she was surrounded by Princess Anne, Charles and Camilla, William and Kate (wearing Alexander McQueen), their children George, Charlotte and Louis, Edward and his wife Sophie Wessex, Louise Windsor, James Windsor, Vice Admiral Timothy Laurence, Richard and Birgitte (Duke and Duchess of Gloucester) and Princess Alexandra.
Who wasn’t on the balcony with the Queen?
The palace carefully specified that only ‘working royals’ and their children would appear alongside the Queen for her balcony appearance during the Platinum Jubilee. Royal experts have claimed this is a tactful way to deal with recent controversies, including Prince Andrew settling the US civil sexual assault case brought by Virginia Giuffre.
‘Working royals’ also excludes Prince Harry and Meghan Markle from making an appearance on the balcony after they withdrew from their royal roles in January 2020.
Was Meghan Markle on the balcony with the Queen?
Although Meghan Markle wasn’t on the balcony with the Queen for her flypast appearance, everyone was shocked to see that the Duchess of Sussex was in the room behind the balcony in Buckingham Palace.
Meghan could be seen playing and laughing with Savannah and Isla Phillips and Lena and Mia Tindall as she entertained the lively children ahead of the Air Force salute.