Not a lot of people realize that England’s Prime Minister has such a close relationship with the King or Queen, including a weekly lunch.
King Charles III, who was proclaimed King last month following the Queen’s death, is set to welcome his second Prime Minister next week.
On Thursday, Liz Truss announced her resignation amid a political crisis, making her 45-day tenure, the shortest in Britain’s history.
The King himself is just 42 days into his reign since the death of his mother the Queen – meaning he and Truss had very few audiences together – something that the monarch and PM carry out once a week, UK-based newspaper The Daily Mirror reported.
In fact, the pair’s first weekly audience took place just seven days ago at Buckingham Palace – although it was the third time they had met following the late monarch’s passing, the newspaper reported.
And it seems it will always be remembered for the King’s stinging comment to Truss, who was under intense political pressure at the time.
As Truss was escorted into the room where she was to have the audience with Charles, the former Tory leader could be seen carrying out an awkward curtsey, before shaking hands with him.
And he remarked: “Back again? Dear oh dear.”
In her statement outside Downing Street, Truss said she had spoken to the King to notify him she was resigning as leader of the Conservative Party.
Charles held his first in-person audience with Truss at Buckingham Palace on September 9 – the day after the death of his mother. Truss shared her condolences with the new King, saying: “Your Majesty, my very greatest sympathies.”
“You are very kind. It was the moment I have been dreading, as I know a lot of people have. We’ll try to keep everything going. Come, come have a seat,” Charles replied.
A day later, Truss took part in the historic Accession Council where Charles was formally proclaimed King. The same day, the King also held an audience with Truss and members of her Cabinet at the Palace.
On September 18, the day before the Queen’s funeral, Charles held another audience with her. He was shown smiling broadly and greeting the Tory leader with his arms wide open, The Daily Mirror reported.
On October 2, Truss had objected to the King attending the Cop27 gathering in Egypt in November, The Daily Mirror reported citing The Sunday Times.
It further reported that Charles, who as the Prince of Wales was a passionate campaigner on climate change, sought advice from the government and it was agreed that this would not be the right occasion for him to make his first overseas visit as sovereign.
The new PM will be the first the King has asked to form a government in his new role as monarch. Fifteen prime ministers spanned the late Queen’s 70-year reign. Winston Churchill – with whom she had a close friendship – was her first, and Truss her last.