Princess of Wales dedicates star-studded carol service to late Queen
The Princess of Wales has dedicated a star-studded Christmas carol service to the late Queen, paying tribute to her “incredible legacy” which has “profoundly inspired many of us”.
Photos give a sneak peek at the celebratory concert, which was given to a crowd of more than 1,800 at Westminster Abbey last Thursday and will be broadcast on ITV on Christmas Eve.
Kate attended alongside other members of the Royal Family including the Prince of Wales, their children Prince George and Princess Charlotte and the King and Queen consort – as the event took place hours after the final part of the controversial documentary The Duke and Duchess of Sussex took place on Netflix Fallen.
Among the performers at the service were the Westminster Abbey Choir, singers Craig David and Alfie Boe and Melanie C, who sang a duet.
The Prince of Wales and Dame Kristin Scott Thomas gave readings while actor Hugh Bonneville read an extract from Paddington’s Christmas Post.
Kate, who ran the service with support from the Royal Foundation, introduced the program in a recorded message earlier this month and said she was “thrilled” to be returning to the Abbey for a second year.
“This Christmas will be our first without Her late Majesty Queen Elizabeth,” she said.
“Her Majesty loved Christmas as a time that brought people together and reminded us of the importance of faith, friendship and family and showing empathy and compassion.
“This year we have invited hundreds of inspiring people to our service.
“Those who demonstrate the power of connectedness and community values and allow us to continue Her Majesty’s tradition of recognizing and thanking those who have gone above and beyond to support others.
“Her Majesty leaves us with an incredible legacy that has deeply inspired many of us.”
Kate dedicated the service to the Queen and “all who are sadly no longer with us”.
“Although Christmas will feel very different this year, we can still remember the memories and traditions we shared,” she added.
“Take time to slow down and celebrate with family and friends all the wonderful things that make Christmas so special.”
The Christmas Eve show is narrated by Catherine Zeta-Jones.
It is also shown how Inna Hryhorovych, headmistress of St Mary’s School in London, Ukraine, receives a letter from Kate thanking her for the care she is giving to families and children who run the school amid conflict in her home country visit.
In the November 18 letter, Kate praised the school as a “lifeline for the whole community” and said she was impressed by their “courage and sense of togetherness at such a challenging time” as she invited Ms Hryhorovych and the school choir to sing a Christmas carol in the service.
A Christmas tree at the abbey was decorated with small Paddington bears, a nod to the late Queen’s famous sketch, while guests were greeted upon arrival at the entrance with atmospheric snowflakes from a snow machine.
Narrated by Catherine Zeta-Jones, Royal Carols: Together At Christmas airs on ITV1 on Christmas Eve at 7pm.