Heir to the throne Prince Charles acknowledged it isn’t just the Queen who is above him as he greeted 12ft stilt-walkers in Notting Hill today.
The Prince of Wales and Duchess of Cornwall visited performing arts venue The Tabernacle in West London to meet performers in this year’s Notting Hill Carnival – the first since 2019.
Among the performers were Moko Jumbie stilt walkers who towered over the royals.
Polite as ever, Charles, 73, greeted them with a handshake despite technically bending royal protocol to do – as the heir of the throne only looks up to the Queen.
As he shook their hands he said: ‘Hello up there!’
The Duchess of Cornwall, 74, looked elegant in a green patterned dress from ME+EM costing £295, paired with espadrille wedges.
The carnival, which was cancelled in 2020 and 2021 due to Covid, is set to make a triumphant return to the streets of West London this year with more than a million people expected to attend.
The Duchess of Cornwall and Prince Charles posed for a photo with performers at this year’s Notting Hill carnival and The Mangrove steel band on a visit to performing arts venue The Tabernacle
The Prince of Wales, 73, shared a joke with one of the carnival performers who was dressed in a stunning red dress and patterned headdress
Charles appeared to enjoy chatting to one performer who looked beautiful in red lipstick and feathered necklace
Charles stopped to chat to other performers during his visit to The Tabernacle where organisers of the first Notting Hill Carnival since 2019 gathered to meet them
Charles tried his hand at playing the steel pan – and one player gave him a tip that the instrument always sounds better when you have a smile on your face
The performers will take to the carnival once again on the August Bank Holiday weekend after the Covid hiatus
Footage shows the Royal couple joining a rehearsal procession complete with performers in dazzling costumes and and catchy tunes played on the steel pans.
Accompanying performers in the procession were huge sunflowers and an enormous giraffe figurine wearing a top hat.
Charles, 73, even tried his hand at playing the steel pan, a musical instrument originating from Trinidad and Tobago.
As he played a decent tune, a steel pan player watched over him.
He said: ‘I always say there’s a trick to playing the steel pan: If you smile, it sounds better.’
Prince Charles was in awe as he looked up at the talented stilt walkers, known as Moko Jumbies
It’s a long way up! Charles tried to have a conversation with the stilt walkers who towered over him at 12ft
The Prince of Wales beamed as he saw the Moko Jumbies, which roughly translate to mean ‘healing spirit’
The future king didn’t seem fazed by the 12ft stilt walkers and politely reached up to shake their hands as they towered over him
The Prince of Wales grinned as he shook the hands of the Moko Jumbie stilt walkers
However Charles didn’t seem particularly sure of his musical abilities and replied: ‘I’m not much cop at this.’
When the future King met the 12ft high Moko Jumbies, he couldn’t help but to reach up to shake their hands.
‘Moko’ is the word for ‘healer’ in Central Africa, while ‘Jumbi’ is a Caribbean word for ‘ghost’ or ‘spirit’.
To mark the return of the Notting Hill Carnival, which first took place in 1966, Charles has contributed to a souvenir brochure for the event.
He wrote: ‘The carnival is…a tremendous expression of the cultural variety which means so much as we continue to strive towards the establishment of an harmonious multi-cultural society.’
The Prince of Wales chatted to performers throughout the day as he contributed to a souvenir brochure marking the return of the Notting Hill Carnival as ‘tremendous’
The Prince of Wales described the Notting Hill Carnival as hugely important to living in a ‘harmonious multi-cultural society’
Camilla, wearing a green pattered dress from ME+EM, posed with adults and children involved in this year’s carnival procession
Charles, 73, appeared to enjoy his day out as he hailed the importance of Notting Hill Carnival
The Prince of Wales also smiled for snaps with performers who were dressed in stunning carnival outfits.
Not forgetting the people who keep things running smoothly from behind the scenes, Charles and the Duchess of Cornwall made sure to chat with the organisers of the event too.
Taking a little break to chat to organisers, Camilla was filmed having a natter with some members of the Tabernacle Seniors Group, who meet every week, while they fanned themselves in the blistering heat.
Charles wrote a passage in a souvenir magazine for this year’s Notting Hill Carnival which describes the event as
Camilla, who turns 75 this week, was wished a happy birthday by people who came out to meet her
Not forgetting the people behind the scenes, Charles and Camilla also met with organisers who ensure the carnival runs smoothly
All smiles! Charles and Camilla beamed as they posed with organisers and performers who will take to the streets of Notting hill this August
She then shook hands with people who had come to see her and the Prince of Wales while they wished her a ‘Happy birthday’.
The Duchess of Cornwall will celebrate her 75th birthday on Sunday.
To mark the occasion, a documentary about Camilla will air on ITV at 9pm this evening.
Camilla’s Country Life will take an intimate look at the Duchess of Cornwall and her relationships with her nearest and dearest.
It will follow her as she takes on guest editorship of Country Life Magazine.
The documentary is expected to explore Camilla’s ‘risque’ sense of humour and the nervousness she sometimes feels before making big public appearances.