The Prince of Wales is said to hope the nation does not return to “bickering” after the feeling of “togetherness” that was evident over the platinum jubilee weekend.
Charles and his wife, Camilla, kicked off the final day of celebrations to mark the Queen’s 70-year reign by meeting guests at the Big Jubilee Lunch at the Oval cricket ground in Kennington, south London.
The couple mingled with the 450 guests who included members of a variety of organizations, as well as locals and a group of 70 volunteers from the Royal Voluntary Service.
Sarah Friar, CEO of neighborhood app Nextdoor, was among those to meet Charles when he sat opposite her at her table.
“He said at the end how great it was that everyone is coming together this weekend,” she said.
“We see it with neighbors, right? I’m from a company called Nextdoor, so people coming together with the best coming out. People who do not know each other are out having fun. ”
Friar, who lives close to San Francisco but is originally from Sion Mills in Co Tyrone, Northern Ireland, said Charles had commented: “When it comes to Monday are we going to go back to all the bickering again? Let’s hope we do not do that. ” Friar said it was “a wonderful thought” for all of us.
Gemma Snow, from the Eden Project – a visitor attraction in Cornwall – was sitting next to Charles and said he talked about “keeping that togetherness going”.
Saturday night’s concert at Buckingham Palace came up in conversation too, with Friar saying Charles described it as “marvelous”.
Local resident Sonia Wilson also mentioned the Party at the Palace to Charles.
“He said: ‘I’m sorry to keep you from your lunch.’ I said: ‘No worries, I had my marmalade sandwich,’ ”she said.
Wilson said Charles laughed and replied: “That’s a good joke, isn’t it?”
Singer Elaine Paige, Ambassador for the Royal Voluntary Service, with Charles and Camilla at lunch.
Speaking afterwards, Paige said: “I think they are having a marvelous time. Obviously it’s quite a schedule for them all.
“But I think he seemed very relaxed and full of good humor, and I think his opening comment was – because it was only half past 11 – ‘It’s a little early for lunch.’”
Speaking about the Queen’s sketch with Paddington Bear, Paige said: “I thought to myself what a brilliant actor she is.”
She said the Queen had perfect timing and a “twinkle in her eye”, adding: “I think she’s just the most superlative actor. It was brilliant. Absolutely brilliant. ”
Charles and Camilla viewed a 6 meter x 1.5 meter tea party-themed felt art piece by contemporary artist Lucy Sparrow when they arrived at the event at the cricket ground. The piece will be displayed later this year in the grand entrance of Buckingham Palace.