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'The moment I've been dreading': King Charles tells Liz Truss of grief of losing mother in first audience with PM
9 September 2022, 21:45 | Updated: 9 September 2022, 21:47
King Charles has told Prime Minister Liz Truss that he dreaded the death of the Queen during the pair's first audience at Buckingham Palace.
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The Prime Minister, who only took office this week, was driven from Downing Street to meet Charles following his return to London from Balmoral.
Wearing a plain black dress, she was welcomed by the King who shook her hand at the first of what will be their regular weekly encounters.
Discussions between the monarch and PM usually remain private but cameras caught the opening remarks between the pair during the audience.
"It was the moment I've been dreading, as I know a lot of people have. We'll try keep everything going," King Charles told Ms Truss of his mother's death.
As Ms Truss offered her condolences, Charles thanked her, saying: "You are very kind for coming - I know how busy you are."
He added: "But it's been so touching this afternoon when we arrived here, all those people come to give their condolences...and flowers."
Ms Truss again repeated: "Your Majesty, my very greatest sympathies."
King Charles III holds first audience with Liz Truss
The palace released images of the King's meeting with Ms Truss following his first address to the nation on Friday evening, in which he delivered an emotional tribute to his "darling mama" and renewed her promise of lifelong service.
He said: "I pay tribute to my mother's memory and I honour her life of service. I know that her death brings great sadness to so many of you, and I share that sense of loss beyond measure with you all."
Earlier, Ms Truss led tributes in the House of Commons to the Queen as she urged the country to support their new monarch.
She told MPs the King "bears an awesome responsibility that he now carries for all of us", adding: "Even as he mourns, his sense of duty and service is clear."
She said the British people, the Commonwealth and all MPs must support Charles as he takes the country forward to a "new era of hope and progress, our new Carolean age".
While "our lives changed forever" with the death of the Queen, she said Brits must show the world "we do not fear what lies ahead".
Ms Truss met the Queen at her Scottish estate on Tuesday, when she was officially appointed as Prime Minister and invited to form a Government following her victory in the Conservative leadership contest.
On Saturday, she will attend the Accession Council in the State Apartments of St James's Palace where Charles will be formally proclaimed King.