Why was Prince George not a Page of Honour at grandad King Charles' State Opening of Parliament?

The royal youngster was not at King Charles' State Opening of Parliament earlier this week, despite being his Page of Honour for the Coronation celebrations

Why was Prince George not a Page of Honour at grandad King Charles' State Opening of Parliament?
(Image credit: GARETH CATTERMOLE/POOL/AFP via Getty Images)

Prince George was noticeably missing from his grandad King Charles' State Opening of Parliament earlier this week, despite many of the other Pages of Honour from his Coronation being in attendance. So why was Prince George not a Page of Honour at grandad King Charles' State Opening of Parliament? The reason is all to do with royal admin...

King Charles III made his first debut in Parliament as monarch earlier this week, attending the State Opening of Parliament to deliver his speech alongside Queen Consort Camilla, who wore her Coronation dress for the occasion. 

Just like at his Coronation, the King was in his full royal garb and was accompanied by his Pages of Honour for this week's Parliament appearance. But Prince George, who was one of the Pages during the Coronation, failed to make an appearance. 

While some thought he wasn't there due to his upcoming exams at school and the hectic time that comes with that, a time his mum Kate Middleton is making sure doesn't affect his ‘mental health and wellbeing,’ there is actually another reason he wasn't in attendance and it's all to do with royal protocol.

King Charles III and Queen Camilla with their Pages of Honour and Ladies in Attendance on the day of the coronation in the Throne Room at Buckingham Palace. Pictured (left to right) Ralph Tollemache, Lord Oliver Cholmondeley, Nicholas Barclay, Prince George of Wales, the Marchioness of Lansdowne, King Charles III, Queen Camilla, the Queen's sister Annabel Elliot, the Queen's grandson Freddy Parker Bowles, the Queen's great-nephew Arthur Elliot, and the Queen's grandsons Gus Lopes and Louis Lopes. The King is wearing the Imperial State Crown, and Robe on May 6, 2023 in London, England

(Image credit: Getty)

According to royal blog Gert’s Royals, the real reason George didn't attend the big royal event was because royals only serve as Pages of Honour for exceptionally important events, not simply for royal duties. 

“Royals do not typically serve as Pages of Honour, except for extra special occasions like coronations," the blog shares. "That is why Prince George only served as Page for the Coronation.”

The boys who did reprise their roles as Pages were lucky to do so, as Pages typically only serve in the position for a limited time. The reason why is slightly odd, because they only continue to attend events as Pages for as long as they fit into their uniforms. When they have grown out of the royal uniform, the outfit is passed down to the next boy who does fit into it. 

Gert’s Royals explains that Pages of Honour are 'typically sons of extended family or friends and are usually 10-13 years old.'

"How long a Page of Honour serves depends on how long they can fit into the uniform," they said. "Pages of Honour only perform duties at a few events. So, the uniforms are passed down from page to page and not custom-made.”

King Charles III and Queen Camilla

(Image credit: Arthur Edwards - WPA Pool/Getty Images)

Only four of the Pages who attended the Coronation were present at the State Opening of Parliament; Lord Oliver Cholmondeley, whose parents are  Prince William and Kate Middleton’s neighbors in Norfolk, Nicholas Barclay, the grandson of one of Queen Camilla's ladies in waiting, Ralph Tollemache, the son of the King’s godson, and Queen Camilla's great-nephew, Arthur Elliot. 

The two newcomers were Charles van Cutsem, the son of one of Prince William’s close friends, and William Keswick, the grandson of one of Camilla's ladies in waiting.

As well as George being absent from the affair, his parents Prince William and Kate Middleton also missed the ceremony.  

William was busy in Singapore where he was hosting the Earthshot Prize award ceremony to honour environmentalists working to solve environmental issues such as global warming, a cause which is very close to his heart. 

Kate Middleton's absence has been put down to the fact that she simply didn't need to be there. The Princess of Wales has never attended a State Opening of Parliament and there are no royal rules requiring her presence. 

News writer

Charlie Elizabeth Culverhouse is a news writer for Goodtoknow, specialising in family content. She began her freelance journalism career after graduating from Nottingham Trent University with an MA in Magazine Journalism, receiving an NCTJ diploma, and earning a First Class BA (Hons) in Journalism at the British and Irish Modern Music Institute. She has also worked with BBC Good Food and The Independent.