Princess of Wales 'very sorry' for missing Trooping the Colour event

The Princess of Wales has apologised to the Irish Guards for her absence at today's Trooping the Colour event in a letter read out to the regiment.

Princess Kate took over from her husband, Prince William, as colonel of the regiment last year.

Trooping the Colour: The Colonel's Review is taking place at Horse Guards Parade in Whitehall, London, today.

The Colonel's Review is held seven days ahead of the Trooping the Colour parade which has marked the sovereign's birthday for more than 260 years.

But Kate will not be attending to inspect the troops as she normally would in the role, as she continues to recover from cancer treatment.

The letter said: "I wanted to write to you to let you know how proud I am of the entire regiment ahead of the Colonel's Review and Trooping the Colour.

"I appreciate everyone Trooping the Colour this year has been practising for months and dedicating many hours to ensuring their uniforms and drill are immaculate.

"Being your colonel remains an honour and I am very sorry that I'm unable to make the salute at this year's Colonel's Review. Please pass on my apologies to the whole regiment.

"I do hope that I'm able to represent you all once again very soon.

"Please send my very best wishes and good luck to all involved. Quis separabit [Who shall separate (us)?]"

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A video posted by the Irish Guards on X shows the letter by the Princess of Wales being read out to the regiment, who were "deeply touched" by it.

"We continue to wish Her Royal Highness well in her recovery and send Her our very best wishes. Quis Separabit," the post reads.

The final Trooping the Colour rehearsal ahead of the King's birthday parade got under way in London earlier.

This year, the Number 9 Irish Guards will troop their colour. Five regimental bands, each representing one of the foot guards, assembled in Horse Guards Parade.

The Irish Guards mascot, an Irish Wolf Hound named Turlough Mor but affectionately known as Seamus, was led across the square by a scarlet-coated drummer.

The dog was presented to the regiment as the soldiers lined up.

Field Officer in Brigade Waiting Lieutenant Colonel James Coleby shouted orders to the regiment while riding a white horse named Onyx.