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King Constantine of Greece memorial service LIVE: Camilla leads tributes in Charles’ absence, Prince William pulls out for ‘personal reasons’, Sarah Ferguson arrives with Prince Andrew

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Who was King Constantine of Greece?

King Constantine of Greece died at the age of 82 in January last year, decades after being toppled from the throne in a military coup.

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Constantine, who died in an Athens hospital, acceded to the throne at the age of 23 in 1964.

The young king, who had won Olympic gold in sailing, was initially hugely popular.

By the following year he had squandered much of that support with his active involvement in the machinations that brought down the popularly elected Centre Union government of prime minister George Papandreou.

The episode, still widely known in Greece as the ‘apostasy’ or defection from the ruling party of several politicians, destabilised the constitutional order and led to a military coup in 1967.

Constantine eventually clashed with the military rulers and was forced into exile.

The dictatorship abolished the monarchy in 1973 and a referendum after democracy was restored in 1974 dashed any hopes Constantine had of reigning again.

He lived in exile for many years in Hampstead Garden Suburb in north London, before returning to his home country in 2013.

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File photo dated 17/10/11 of King Constantine of the Hellenes delivering a speech during the opening ceremony of the Round Square International Conference at Wellington College, Crowthorne, Berkshire, England. The King is to miss a thanksgiving service for his close friend and second cousin King Constantine of Greece as he continues his treatment for cancer. Issue date: Wednesday February 21, 2024. PA Photo. The Queen will lead members of the royal family as they gather in St George's Chapel, Windsor Castle, on February 27 in honour of the former ruler and last King of Greece who was toppled from the throne decades ago in a military coup. See PA story ROYAL Constantine. Photo credit should read: Kirsty Wigglesworth/PA Wire
LONDON, UNITED KINGDOM - JUNE 02: (EMBARGOED FOR PUBLICATION IN UK NEWSPAPERS UNTIL 24 HOURS AFTER CREATE DATE AND TIME) Queen Elizabeth II (seen with a stain on her dress) is kissed goodbye by King Constantine II of Greece after attending his 70th birthday party at Crown Prince Pavlos of Greece's residence on June 2, 2010 in London, England. (Photo by Max Mumby/Indigo/Getty Images)
WINDSOR, ENGLAND - MAY 18:  Prince William, Duke of Cambridge speaks to King Constantine of Greece during a reception in the Waterloo Chamber, before the Lunch For Sovereign Monarchs at Windsor Castle, on May 18, 2012 in Windsor, England. (Photo by John Stillwell - WPA Pool/Getty Images)

Queen Camilla leads members of the Royal Family at today’s memorial service

Queen Camilla is leading members of the Royal Family at the service for the late King Constantine of Greece at Windsor castle today.

Camilla appeared to grin as she arrived at the Castle this morning, and was greeted at the door.

Wearing a somber black jacket wiith a subtle pinstripe, she paired it with a matching skirt and a wide-brimmed hat with a dark fringe.

She smiled warmly at those gathered to meet her, before entering the venue and adopting a solemn and dignified silence.

And in an emotional display of affection for her husband’s late relative, she appeared to brush away tears as she watched the ceremony.

Queen Camilla attends a thanksgiving service for the life of King Constantine of the Hellenes at St George's Chapel, in Windsor Castle, Berkshire. Picture date: Tuesday February 27, 2024. PA Photo. Constantine II, who died on January 10, 2023 was the last King of Greece, reigning from 1964 to 1974. See PA story ROYAL Constantine. Photo credit should read: Andrew Matthews/PA Wire
WINDSOR, ENGLAND - FEBRUARY 27: Queen Camilla arrives at the funeral for Constantine of Greece at Windsor Palace, February 27, 2024, in Windsor, United Kingdom. (Photo By Raul Terrel/Europa Press via Getty Images)
WINDSOR, ENGLAND - FEBRUARY 27: Queen Camilla attends the Thanksgiving Service for King Constantine of the Hellenes at St George's Chapel on February 27, 2024 in Windsor, England. Constantine II, Head of the Royal House of Greece, reigned as the last King of the Hellenes from 6 March 1964 to 1 June 1973, and died in Athens at the age of 82. (Photo by Jonathan Brady - WPA Pool/Getty Images)

Prince Andrew and the Duchess of York arrive at the memorial service

Prince Andrew has attended the service for the late King Constantine of Greece today with Sarah, Duchess of York and his daughters Princess Eugenie and Beatrice.

It is understood that the Duke of York was attending the service as a member of the British Royal Family and had been invited by the Greek Royal Family.

The Duchess of York was pictured sporting a black fascinator and grey outfit, the mother-of-two donned a pair of elegant earrings and opted for a smattering of glamorous makeup.

She arrived alongside her ex-husband, who she lives with at Royal Lodge in Windsor Great Park in Berkshire.

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King Charles left Windsor Castle earlier today before the service began

King Charles was at Windsor Castle earlier in the day but left before the service for the late King Constantine of Greece began.

Charles, 75, who was diagnosed with an undisclosed form of cancer just over a fortnight ago, is not carrying out public duties while he has treatment.

Constantine was a first cousin once removed and sailing partner of the late Duke of Edinburgh, and died at the age of 82 in January last year, decades after being toppled from the throne in a military coup.

The King had a close friendship with Constantine, choosing him as a godfather for his son William, now the Prince of Wales.

LONDON, ENGLAND - FEBRUARY 18:  HRH Prince Charles, Prince of Wales chats with King Constantine of Greece at a reception at the Royal Academy of Arts on February 18, 2009 in London, England. The Prince of Wales was attending a reception for the Byzantium 330 � 1453 Exhibition at The Royal Academy of Arts.  (Photo by Chris Jackson/Getty Images)
KING'S LYNN, UNITED KINGDOM - DECEMBER 09: (EMBARGOED FOR PUBLICATION IN UK NEWSPAPERS UNTIL 24 HOURS AFTER CREATE DATE AND TIME) King Constantine II of Greece, Prince Charles, Prince of Wales and Camilla, Duchess of Cornwall attend Sunday service at the Church of St Mary Magdalene on the Sandringham estate on December 9, 2007 in King's Lynn, England. (Photo by Max Mumby/Indigo/Getty Images)

Princess of Wales is ‘doing well’ following her abdominal surgery

The Princess of Wales is ‘doing well,’ as she recovers from abdominal surgery, Kensington Palace has said.

Kate, 42, is recuperating at the family’s home in Adelaide Cottage in Windsor.
after undergoing surgery at the London Clinic last month.

She has today missed the memorial service for the late King Constantine of Greece which is being hosted by the British royal family.

Read the full story here:

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Prince William has pulled out of a reading at the memorial service

Prince William has pulled out of attending the memorial service for the late King Constantine, who was his godfather, due to ‘personal reasons’.

No further detail was given on William’s absence, and it is not known if this relates to his wife Kate Middleton’s ongoing recovery after her abdominal surgery last month.

The Prince of Wales, who was due to give a reading, called the family to apologise.

FILE PHOTO: Britain's Prince William, Prince of Wales and Catherine, Princess of Wales attend a ceremonial welcome for The President and the First Lady of the Republic of Korea at Horse Guards Parade in London, Britain November 21, 2023. Chris Jackson/Pool via REUTERS/File Photo

Welcome to our live blog

Good morning and welcome to our live blog following the latest developments as members of the Royal Family attend a memorial service for the late King Constantine of Greece at Windsor Castle.

Queen Camilla has been pictured arriving at the service for Constantine II of Greece, who died in January 2023, along with Prince Andrew, Sarah, Duchess of York and his daughters Princess Eugenie and Beatrice

Britain's Queen Camilla attends the Thanksgiving Service for King Constantine of the Hellenes at St George's Chapel on February 27, 2024 in Windsor, England. Chris Jackson/Pool via REUTERS

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Source: Daily Mail

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