Accession Council proclaims Charles as Britain's new king

Prince Charles

In this file photo taken on July 16, 2020 Marshal of The Royal Air Force, Britain's Prince Charles, Prince of Wales gestures as he talks to cadets after the Graduation Ceremony of the Queen’s Squadron and Sovereign’s Review at RAF College Cranwell in eastern England. He has been confirmed king.

Photo credit: Julian Simmonds | AFP

Britain's Charles III was officially proclaimed king in a ceremony on Saturday, a day after he vowed in his first speech to mourning subjects that he would emulate his "darling mama", Queen Elizabeth II. 

The 73-year-old Charles III automatically became monarch upon the queen's death Thursday, but an Accession Council ceremony at St James's Palace early Saturday is a constitutional formality to recognise his sovereignty.

The pomp-filled protocol, featuring trumpets and a balcony proclamation, is the latest part of a 10-day programme of official mourning -- which will last even longer for the royals -- held across Britain leading up to the queen's funeral.

An emotional Charles set the tone for his reign in a televised address Friday in which he hailed his mother's "unswerving devotion" during her record breaking seven decades on the throne.

He vowed to carry on Queen Elizabeth II's “lifelong service” with his own modernizing stamp, as Britain enters an uncertain new age under a new sovereign.