Former Spice Girl Geri Horner has given the King a hug, a kiss and an encouraging pep talk during a Prince’s Trust event, telling him “you’re a very modern king”.
In a throwback to her days with her girl group, Horner planted a kiss on Charles’s cheek and whispered into his ear at a Buckingham Palace reception celebrating trust award winners.
This Morning presenter Holly Willoughby left the show early to attend the palace event by herself, as reports continued of a rift with co-host and fellow Prince’s Trust ambassador Phillip Schofield.
At one point the King was left amazed when he took part in a magic trick performed by magician Dynamo, whose big break came after he was awarded a Prince’s Trust grant.
When Horner met the King she kissed him on both cheeks, hugged him and later told him “I’m so proud of you” and “you’re a very modern king”, and also whispered something into his ear.
She later remained tight-lipped when asked what she said to the King, who was crowned on May 6, but said: “Everyone’s doing the best they can, no matter what position you are in we all need support and encouragement.
Horner met the King with Oti Mabuse, a former Strictly Come Dancing professional, and introduced Rising Star winner Funmilola Sosanya.
The former Spice Girl said about Charles: “I just think he’s a modern king, and when he was 28 years old he started the Prince’s Trust. He could have been out partying, instead he created this amazing organisation – a modern king that believed in investing in the potential and possibility of people.”
Charles invited those recognised during Tuesday’s Prince’s Trust awards to the palace along with the celebrities who presented the honours, including Hollywood star Stanley Tucci, British actor Stephen Graham, Edward Enninful, editor-in-chief of British Vogue, musician and producer Nile Rodgers and the event’s hosts Ant and Dec.
Willoughby looked relaxed as she chatted with Charles alongside Tucci and Motaz Amer, the winner of the Young Change Maker award.
Mr Amer is supporting others as a young trust ambassador after completing the organisation’s Team programme after his family left behind the conflict in their home country of Yemen to make a new life in Northern Ireland.
Tucci praised him as “extraordinary” and revealed the King is a fan of his Searching For Italy show: “Seems like His Majesty likes it too, so I’ll have to do another series, but probably not till next year.”
Charles laughed as he opened his hand to reveal the magician’s handwriting on the note, and Rodgers who was watching, clapped.
Dynamo said: “He had a big Cheshire grin, almost, on his face. He’s met lots of people but I feel for that one moment there was a glimmer of magic behind his eyes that just came through.”
Speaking about the support he received from the Prince’s Trust, the magician said: “I got £2,800, I bought a camcorder and a laptop and that’s when I started filming my magic, and that obviously went on to the internet and helped get me my first TV shows. Without that I don’t think I would be here.”