Scores of people flocked to King Charles’s beloved Deeside to take in the coronation today.
The ceremony was shown on big screens at Ballater’s Albert Hall and nearby Balmoral Castle, where Ballater Pipe Band performed alongside a falconry displays and a line-up of colourful vintage buses.
Locals and holiday-makers from all over made the trip, describing it as “something to remember”.
April Burtenshaw, 57, came from East Sussex with her friend Corrine Barraclough, 55, in honour of her late grandad Ronald Rose, who was born in Ballater and went on to become a baker – delivering rolls to the Queen.
The sales assistant said: “My grandad used to deliver the morning rolls to the Queen at Balmoral Castle. Our whole family loves Ballater and my mum used to come on holidays here all the time. We’re thrilled to be here and to see Charles crowned. He will make a fantastic king.”
‘It is a special event’
Mary and Jim McKie, both 66, and from Aberdeen, took time out from their holiday at Ballater Caravan Park to join locals at the Albert Hall.
Mr McKie, a retired civil servant, said: “I am very happy to be here to join the local community in the celebration of the coronation. It is a special event not only for the village but the whole country.”
His wife added: “It’s very exciting. Everyone is so happy. We were at the Coronation Ball last week too which was fabulous.”
Aberdonians Norma Malcolm, 81, her daughter Lynda Wilson, 63, and her future daughter-in-law Merith Jager, 24, from the Netherlands, were exuberant, chorusing: “We’re here because it’s King’s Day. We love the Royal family.”
Ballater sawmill worker Andrew Thompson, 38, from was watching the coronation on his home with his daughters Caia, eight, Xana, six, and Hali, four.
He said: “It is a historic time, especially for the kids. They’ve been learning all about the coronation in school and have been making crowns. This is something they will remember for the rest of their lives.”
Meanwhile it was a poignant return to Balmoral for police officer Chris Macaulay, who was last there as the late Queen left her beloved Scottish home for the last time.
The 36-year-old, from Inverness, today travelled to Balmoral Castle with his family, wife Mari-Louise, 34, son Zachary, two, and mother-in-law Roz McCooey.
He said: “I am glad to be here on a happier occasion this time and off duty.”
Commemorative whisky brings visitors
IT delivery manager Wendy Isaacs, 53, and her retired builder husband Richard, 64, from Somerset, were enjoying a holiday nearby with their dogs, Meg, and Buddy, both 13, and Bertie, seven.
They came to Balmoral for the coveted, limited edition, Royal Salute commemorative whisky.
Mrs Isaccs said: “We wanted to celebrate the coronation and what better way to do it than at Balmoral.”