TV/Radio Coverage of the Coronation of His Majesty The King

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Coronation Emblem
Coronation Emblem

BBC unveils special coverage and programming to mark the Coronation of His Majesty The King and Her Majesty The Queen Consort

Saturday 6 May

The Coronation

A live broadcast that will cover all of the ceremonial events as they unfold throughout the day, from the early military movements to the formal processions in the lead up to the Westminster Abbey service.

The BBC will provide an extensive network of cameras to give audiences a front row seat on the ceremonial route from Buckingham Palace to Westminster Abbey. Bespoke commentary, starting with the atmosphere on the streets of London as the street-liners take position, will set the scene for the departure of Their Majesties The King and The Queen Consort from Buckingham Palace.

In Westminster Abbey, thousands of guests from the UK and around the world will gather, including politicians past and present, faith leaders, The King and Queen Consort’s patronages and members of the Royal Family. With the arrival of Their Majesties The King and The Queen Consort, the BBC will capture the unique Coronation Service in all its majesty. The architectural splendour of The Abbey will be a breath-taking backdrop to the words and music of the Order of the Service.

The day will continue with the return procession to Buckingham Palace. As the Royal Family are received at The Mall, the BBC will capture the moment that the nation welcomes its newly crowned monarchs before the events culminate in the balcony appearance.

What time is the Coronation on TV?

You can watch coverage of The Coronation on BBC One, BBC Two and BBC iPlayer from 7.30am on Saturday 6 May 2023.

Coverage begins with The Coronation of HM The King: The Preparation and is followed by coverage of The Coronation of HM The King: The Coronation from 10.15am. The Coronation of HM The King: The Celebration will air from 1pm. These programmes will be broadcast on both BBC One and BBC Two with sign language available on BBC Two.

There will also be accessible coverage for people who are blind or partially sighted on Red Button, hosted by Petroc Trelawny.

Radio 3 will also be reflecting the music of the Coronation and the musical interests of The King in the week leading up to the Coronation and on the day itself.

Coverage will simulcast across BBC Radio 4, 5 Live, Radio 3, BBC World Service and BBC Sounds in the UK.

How to watch coverage of the Coronation on the BBC outside the UK

Audiences outside the UK will be able to watch on the BBC News channel, or listen on the World Service.

BBC Studios Productions will be responsible for the broadcast of the Coronation.

Sunday 7 May

Coronation Concert

A unique Coronation Concert will take place at Windsor Castle to celebrate the Coronation of Their Majesties The King and The Queen Consort.

Produced, staged and broadcast live by the BBC and BBC Studios, the Coronation Concert will bring music icons and contemporary stars together in celebration of this historic occasion.

The concert will be attended by a public audience including volunteers from The King and The Queen Consort’s many charity affiliations. It will see a 74 piece world-class classical orchestra to include the strings of the Countess of Wessex String Orchestra and woodwind, brass and percussion sections from the Bands of the Household Division play interpretations of musical favourites fronted by fantastic entertainers, alongside performers from the world of dance and the arts. The performances will be supported by staging and effects located on the Castle’s East Lawn and will also feature a selection of spoken word sequences delivered by stars of stage and screen.

Through a national ballot held by the BBC, five thousand members of the public are being selected to receive a pair of free tickets for the Coronation Concert at Windsor Castle.

Alongside the stars of the concert, the show will also see an exclusive appearance from The Coronation Choir. The 300 strong choir will include singing groups ranging from London Cabbies, an all-deaf sign performance group, a Northern Irish farming community and an LGBTQ+ choir; to a Gaelic choir hailing from the Western Isles of Scotland, Hull’s NHS choir, a traditional male voice choir from Caerphilly and a refugee choir, also from Wales.

A centrepiece of the Coronation Concert, ‘Lighting up the Nation’, will see the country join together in celebration as iconic locations across the United Kingdom are lit up using projections, lasers, potential drone displays and illuminations.

BBC Studios Productions will produce, stage and broadcast the Coronation Concert for BBC One, BBC iPlayer, BBC Radio 2 and BBC Sounds.

What time is the Coronation Concert on?

The Coronation Concert will be broadcast from 8pm on Sunday 7 May 2023.

TV: Special programming

(both past and to come…)

Sunday 23 April

Countryfile – The King and the Countryside – Hamza Yassin and Charlotte Smith are at Dumfries House, the Ayrshire showcase of the abiding rural passions of King Charles – from farming to education, the renaissance of country crafts to the revival of wildlife.

Ahead of the Coronation, Countryfile celebrates Britain’s King Of The Countryside. Hamza discovers The King’s love of wildlife and how environmental efforts at Dumfries have encouraged the return of countless creatures. Charlotte discovers how education projects are teaching local children about field to fork, and Adam Henson joins Elizabeth Buchanan on her farm with her prized herd of Sussex cattle. She was by The King’s side from the very beginning of The Princes’ Countryside Fund.

Sunday 30 April

Charles R: The Making of a Monarch tells the story of King Charles III’s more than seven decades as heir to the throne. During that period, every step of Charles’ life was captured on camera and his words recorded: from newsreel to home movies from interviews to documentaries – both about him and by him. This sixty minute documentary brings together a wealth of material, much rarely seen or unseen.

Songs of Praise: The King’s Journey to Coronation – Aled Jones visits Highgrove House and the gardens which are a testament to King Charles’ lifelong desire to champion causes close to his heart, especially for the environment. Gyles Brandreth recalls important events that have shaped the life and faith of King Charles and we also hear about the pioneering work of The Prince’s Trust, a charity founded by The King after leaving the Navy. The Dean of Westminster reveals the preparations for the upcoming ceremony and about the sacred symbols used in Coronations.

From Monday 1 May

The One Show will launch the Coronation week starting with a one-hour special featuring the brilliant work being done across all the nations and communities of the UK in the build-up to the biggest weekend of the year.

We’ll be hearing from those people up and down the country whose lives have been touched by The King and the Queen Consort and looking ahead to the weekend with insights into what people can expect from the first ceremonial event of its kind in over 70 years.

EastEnders will mark the historical occasion with a Coronation-themed street party in Albert Square hosted by the residents of Walford who come together to celebrate the festivities of the day just as those around the nation will be celebrating this summer. Viewers can expect to see the community spirit of Walford at an all-time high as the residents attempt to leave their drama at the door, but whether the day will go ahead without a hitch is yet to be revealed.

Wednesday 3 May

Coronation Tailors: Fit for a King – The Great British Sewing Bee’s Patrick Grant goes behind the scenes at the family firm making ceremonial uniforms for King Charles’s coronation. 

Tasked with creating thousands of bespoke uniforms for the big day, the Kashket family have been making spectacular ceremonial wear for four generations. As well as discovering the skill and craftmanship required to create these unique garments, Patrick also meets some of the men and women of the armed forces who will wear them.

Friday 5 May

Sing For The King: The Search for the Coronation Choir – Across the four corners of Britain, on stages and behind closed doors, thousands of communities, friends, neighbours and colleagues are getting together to experience the power, joy and togetherness singing in a choir brings.

Now, as the nation prepares for the Coronation of His Majesty The King, a very special choir – made up of singing groups of all shapes and sizes to give a true representation of the diverse range of faces, places and voices that makes up modern Britain today – will be given the once in a lifetime chance to sing their hearts out for The King and Queen Consort at the Coronation Concert, as well as the millions who will be watching around the world.

Ready to roll up their sleeves and put the choirs through their paces are celebrity mentors Gareth Malone, Motsi Mabuse, Amanda Holden and Rose Ayling-Ellis. Drawing on their individual areas of expertise, they will coach, challenge and inspire the choirs to give a pitch-perfect performance and overcome the inevitable nerves that come with singing in front of royalty at Windsor Castle.

The final 300 strong choir will feature singing groups ranging from London Cabbies, an all-deaf sign performance group, a Northern Irish farming community and an LGBTQ+ choir; to a Gaelic choir hailing from the Western Isles of Scotland, Hull’s NHS choir, a traditional male voice choir from Caerphilly and a refugee choir, also from Wales. We’ll also hear Yorkshire’s only female South Asian choir, the London Fire Brigade and a troupe of RNLI sea shanty singers from Portishead – all of whom provide a highly-valued community for their members and serve a meaningful purpose beyond singing alone.

As the documentary draws to a close, and with the concert performance just days away, we’ll see the final Coronation choir meet at Windsor Castle where all 300 will sing together for the very first time in an uplifting and emotional final rehearsal.

Royal Bargain Hunt – Christina Trevanion hosts a special Coronation episode of Bargain Hunt at Newark Antiques fair in which the red and blue teams are made up of royal fans, guided by experts Raj Bisram and Roo Irvine. The teams will have £300 to spend on three items and royal themed-antiques are very much on their shopping lists. Both teams are challenged to buy at least one item featuring a crown and their buys will be sold at Richard Winterton Auctioneers in Lichfield. Which team will make the most profit and win this Coronation competition?

Sunday 7 May

Coronation Kitchen Live – To mark the historical event of the Coronation of King Charles III, Saturday Kitchen will broadcast live and look ahead to the Big Lunch and the Coronation Concert.

Michelin starred chef Adam Byatt will rustle up a dish he cooked for The King and Queen when they ate at his restaurant back in 2021. Star of BBC’s Royal Recipes, Anna Haugh will make a dish fit for royalty, giving her passionate modern twists to historical royal recipes. Matt Tebbutt will create dishes that will work well for the Big Lunch, as well as snacks for watching the concert

Celebrity guests will join our party to share memories of Charles and the wider Royal family and our resident expert Helen McGinn will have an array of drinks, perfect for any celebration!

Antiques Roadshow Coronation Special – The Antiques Roadshow celebrates Britain’s fascination with all things regal by taking a look through the archives at some of the most intriguing artefacts with royal connections that have appeared on the show.

The episode will look at the tradition of royal gifts, including exquisitely crafted treasures that have been given by kings and queens to trusted members of staff, such as a jewelled bracelet given by Queen Victoria to a lady-in-waiting.

Songs of Praise: A Coronation Celebration – Katherine Jenkins and Pam Rhodes visit the magnificent Hampton Court Palace to look back into royal history and to look forward to what may define King Charles’ reign. Speaking to historians, faith leaders and those who share The King’s passions, they celebrate the Coronation and discuss what will shape the reign to come.

Radio & Sounds

Radio 2

Saturday 6 May

Pick of the Pops – Paul Gambaccini celebrates the Coronation by playing two top twenty charts from key weeks in King Charles’ life: November 1966, the week of King Charles’ 18th birthday, and the chart from his 50th birthday in 1998.

Sunday 7 May

The Coronation Concert at the Castle – Radio 2 captures the atmosphere of the Coronation Concert live from Windsor Castle. Ahead of the event, Zoe Ball will be speaking to the performers as well as those who have made the whole evening possible. Dermot O’Leary will be amongst the crowds that have gathered to find out their stories and sharing their anticipation, ahead of the concert which will be broadcast live on BBC Radio 2, with commentary by Jason Mohammad.

On BBC Sounds from 14 April

The Coronation Collection – In a series of pocket guides, award-winning television and radio presenter Elle Osili-Wood takes a look at different aspects of the Coronation of King Charles III. Across the collection, Elle is joined by historians, royal commentators and special guests as they explore the history and significance of The Orb and Sceptre, St Edward’s Crown, The Coronation Oath, The Anointing, and The Abbey.

Each Coronation Pocket Guide will be released on BBC Sounds on Friday 14 April and be broadcast across Jeremy Vine’s show on Radio 2 from Monday to Friday, in the lead up to Saturday 6 May.

The King & I – Sara Cox presents a special programme featuring the stories of people who have met The King over the years. She hears from contributors such as Stephen Fry, Judi Love, Joanna Lumley, Jay Blades, Dame Judi Dench, Geri Halliwell, Rod Stewart and Carol Vorderman. There will also be contributions from listeners who will share their memories of meeting The King. The programme will be accompanied by a soundtrack of The King’s favourite music.

In Youth We Trust – How the Prince’s Trust Saved Me – In 1976, after completing his time in the Royal Navy, the then Prince of Wales used his severance pay to set up an organisation that has gone on to help one million young people, many of them disadvantaged.

This programme will feature incredible stories from those whose careers were kickstarted by the trust, including actors Idris Elba and David Oyelowo, music producer Naughty Boy, and bands Stereophonics and Muse, amongst others. Listeners will hear from stars who have collaborated with the organisation and been involved in its concerts, such as Elton John, Brian May and Paul McCartney.

On BBC Sounds from end of April

The King’s Garden – This programme shines a light on the gardens at Highgrove. The gardens have been designed, as The King says, ‘To please the eye and sit in harmony with nature.’ Presenter Zoe Ball visits the gardens, which attract thousands of visitors every year, for a special behind the scenes tour. She will speak to those who work there and find out what makes Highgrove so special.

Radio 3

  • Radio 3 celebrates the Coronation with a live broadcast of music from Westminster Abbey from 9am, with Katie Derham introducing performances by Sir John Eliot Gardiner, Monteverdi Choir and English Baroque Soloists, Sir Antonio Pappano and the Coronation Orchestra, with a programme of traditional repertoire and new commissions.

Radio 4

  • The Coronation celebrations will be reflected in The Archers. Ambridge aims to rival the crown jewels in sparkle to mark the Coronation, while some characters in the world’s longest running continuing drama will be able to draw upon their memories of the Coronation of The King’s mother.

Saturday 29 April

  • Charles: the Making of a King – King Charles is the sixty-fourth sovereign in a family line stretching back over a thousand years. Few people have been so prepared for a job they’ve waited most of a lifetime to attain. Sarah Montague looks back at the people and events which shaped Britain’s longest serving Prince of Wales, and examines how the legacy left to him by his mother, Queen Elizabeth the Second, will shape the path he chooses as monarch.

Monday 1 May

  • Beyond Belief: Divine Right – At its heart the Coronation is a religious service, steeped in ancient ritual. Aleem Maqbool and the panel explore the religious symbolism of the Coronation and discuss what this service means in the modern day and to King Charles III.
  • Stone of Destiny – Scottish poet Len Pennie goes in search of the student plotters and literary sensations who schemed to get back the ultimate symbol of Scotland – the stone of Scone. It was the early mediaeval inauguration seat of the Scottish kings, sitting blamelessly in Scone Abbey waiting to be taken out every time a new monarch had to be made. But then it was taken – in 1296 King Edward I wanted to extinguish Scots kingship so he grabbed the stone and took it to Westminster Abbey to sit in a coronation chair for the Kings of England. There was surprisingly little fuss. But then in the early 20th century something stirred. Scottish home rulers and nationalists wanted it back and the stone became a symbol not just of sovereignty but of outrage and injustice. All kinds of marvellous schemes were dreamt up to get it back. At Christmas 1950 one of them succeeded. Join Len to find out how a lump of Perthshire sandstone became the subject of an Ealing comedy style heist.

Sunday 7 May

  • Desert Island Discs – The castaway is the historian Professor Peter Hennessy, one of the UK’s leading contemporary historians and an expert on the British constitution. During the course of an engaging interview he reflects on his life chronicling post-war Britain and his respect and affection for Queen Elizabeth II.

5 Live

  • 5 Live will head to the heart of the action with programming coming live from London in advance of the Coronation ceremony with Tony Livesey presenting 5 Live Drive on Friday May 5 and 5 Live Breakfast with Rachel Burden and Chris Warburton on Saturday 6 May.

World Service English

  • The Day I Met The King – As The King is crowned at Westminster Abbey, Orna Merchant presents a special programme of people’s recollections of meeting King Charles III of the United Kingdom. King Charles, who is the monarch of 14 other Commonwealth realms around the world, succeeded to the throne following the death of his mother, Queen Elizabeth II – Britain’s longest ever reigning monarch, in September 2022. Prior to becoming King, Charles had been the longest serving Prince of Wales in history. Here people from all over the globe remember their meetings with King Charles over the years.
  • The Documentary: The Making of King Charles – Charles III waited a very long time to become King. While he was waiting, he filled his life with activity on behalf of favoured causes like the environment, charities like The Princes Trust, and places over which he would one day reign. In the process he attracted criticism for meddling, and praise for intervening – two sides of the same coin. On the eve of his Coronation, this documentary will examine what he got up to, what it says about the type of person he is, and whether it points to what kind of King he will be.
  • Witness History presents a week of special programming looking at Monarchies and Kings past, in the run up to the Coronation to King Charles III

BBC News

In the run up to the Coronation, BBC News will be covering the preparations in London and Windsor as well as talking to communities across the UK about their celebrations and participation in the Big Help Out. Correspondents will be looking at the views of the nations of the UK, the Commonwealth, the monarchy, the new King and Queen Consort and what’s changed since the last coronation in 1953 – which was ground-breaking for live TV coverage.

On Coronation Day, BBC News will provide comprehensive coverage with live presentation from Westminster Abbey and with contributions from correspondents across the UK, the Commonwealth and around the world. On Sunday, there will be a BBC News Special covering the UK’s street parties and celebrations.

Children’s

Newsround will cover the Coronation on all platforms (daily bulletins, online and social media) and will explain the history and significance of the Coronation of a new monarch, as well as provide live coverage of the event itself.

Blue Peter – On Friday 5 May, the Blue Peter studio will be decorated with bunting triangles designed by children. Presenter Joel will also be challenged to join the Royal Marines band where he will rehearse and perform as a drummer with the marching band who will feature in the Coronation parade.

BBC Education

BBC Teach will create a video-led assembly pack for primary schools to mark the Coronation. Supplemented by key images, the pack will suggest reflection and ‘pause for thought’ questions, as well as a suggested framework for teachers to use in the classroom about the momentous occasion.

England

Local Radio

  • On the morning of the Coronation, Local Radio will join teams from around the country to hear how they are marking the historical day. On Sunday, we will hear from those taking part in The Big Lunch reflecting how people are joining together for the event. Monday 8 May will look at the efforts of volunteering as part of BBC Local Radio’s Make a Difference initiative.

Scotland

  • BBC Radio Scotland will cover the Coronation across its news output as well as providing live coverage of the event
  • BBC Radio Nan Gaidheal will be covering the build-up on the day of the Coronation and the ceremony itself in Gaelic. Beginning at 10am, Cathy MacDonald and Catriona Murray will be providing commentary.

Wales

For BBC Radio Wales

  • King and Country: How Wales Made a Monarch – Before Charles became King, he was Prince of Wales. It was a role he took more seriously than any predecessor, but what impact did he make in Wales, and what does it tell us about how he will reign? Being Prince of Wales meant more than a title to Charles, and interviews with those he encountered will paint a picture of the work he did in business, culture and conservation.
  • The Day I Met The King – He’s been waiting to take to the throne for his entire lifetime and we all think we know him but who is the real King Charles III, king of 15 realms, leader of the Commonwealth and the longest ever serving Prince of Wales?

Northern Ireland

  • There will be coverage across BBC Radio Ulster/ Foyle and BBC Sounds with scheduled programmes in the lead up to and on the Coronation weekend, reflecting the occasion and local plans. These will include a special Gardeners’ Corner ‘Highgrove and Hillsborough’ programme on Saturday 6 May looking at Northern Ireland’s horticultural links with The Monarchy.
  • Classical Connections With John Toal and Sounds Sacred will feature a mix of 30 minutes of music, including two hymns, recorded by the Royal Irish Regiments, based in Holywood County Down, who will have a key role to play locally at the time of the Coronation.

iPlayer Quality and Accessibility

Viewers will be able to watch the Coronation in the best possible picture on BBC iPlayer – with the entire event streaming live from multiple locations in Ultra High Definition and High Dynamic Range. UHD will offer sharper, more detailed images, while HDR will enable viewers to enjoy brighter highlights and deeper shadows throughout all the celebration and pageantry of The King’s Procession from Buckingham Palace to Westminster Abbey.

BBC iPlayer’s UHD stream will also use a Wide Colour Gamut, meaning viewers will see more colours than they ever usually see on TV – offering an even more lifelike view that makes the most of this magnificent occasion.

The Coronation will also be the BBC’s most accessible live event ever on BBC iPlayer. Viewers will be able to watch with subtitles, sign language, and an alternative commentary version for people with sight loss – all delivered live on iPlayer.

The alternative commentary version will also be available on red button on broadcast channels, and the subtitled, alternative commentary, and signed versions will be available to viewers by pressing red while watching a BBC channel on an internet-connected TV.

Viewers will also have the option to watch live without BBC commentary.

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