I’ve been allowed out of my cage, King Charles jokes during visit

May 12, 2024 - 2:42 PM
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Britain's King Charles visits the 3 Royal School of Military Engineering (RSME), the training base for the Army's Royal Engineers, in Minley, Britain, May 9, 2024. (Jonathan Buckmaster/Pool via Reuters)

 Britain’s King Charles joked he had been “allowed out of his cage” on Thursday as he visited a military training college on his latest engagement since returning to public duties after his cancer diagnosis.

“I do apologize for taking you by surprise, but when this opportunity appeared and I had been allowed out of my cage, I wanted to come and see,” he told soldiers as he met staff and their families at the 3 Royal School Of Military Engineering in southern England.

The 75-year-old monarch was “greatly encouraged” to get back to public-facing duties, Buckingham Palace said when he resumed engagements at the end of last month.

His nephew Peter Phillips said in a TV interview his uncle had been frustrated by the pace of his recuperation.

The visit was the king’s second engagement in two days after he hosted his first annual garden party at Buckingham Palace on Wednesday. However, the engagements meant he was unable to see his younger son Prince Harry, who was making a rare trip to Britain this week from his home in California.

A spokesperson for Harry said a reunion between Charles and his estranged son would “not be possible due to his majesty’s full program”.

Harry was also busy on Thursday, visiting bereaved military children in London, chatting and playing games with them and spending time with their parents, the charity hosting the event said.

—Reporting by Sachin Ravikumar; editing by Jonathan Oatis