King and Queen Consort celebrate Asian communities at Buckingham Palace

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The King and Queen Consort celebrated the contribution East and South-East Asian communities make to Britain by hosting a reception at Buckingham Palace.

The royal couple greeted and spoke with guests including fashion designers Alexa Chung and John Rocha, the Crowned Prince of Selangor, Malaysia, and “Korean Englishman” YouTubers, in the palace on Wednesday evening.

There were more than 300 people at the reception from across various sectors; including the arts, media, fashion, business, and healthcare – with champagne and canapes served throughout the evening.

Other members of the royal family joined the celebratory event – the Earl of Wessex, the Princess Royal, the Duke of Kent, the Duchess of Gloucester and Princess Alexandra.

Guests gathered in the White Drawing Room, Blue Drawing Room and Picture Gallery to greet their royal hosts.

Ms Chung, wearing a sparkling dress, told reporters she had “a lovely time”.

British East and South-East Asian communities reception
Designer John Rocha greeted the King at Buckingham Palace (Chris Jackson/PA)

He told the PA news agency it was amazing that he had been born “in a colony” and is now “here talking to the King”.

He called the palace “a wonderful place” and recalled speaking with the King about fishing when he came to collect his CBE in 2002.

YouTubers Joshua Carrot and Oliver Kendal, who host the “Korean Englishman” channel centred around sharing South Korean culture and food, said they were “amazed” the King had heard of them.

British East and South-East Asian communities reception
Joshua Carrot and Oliver Kendal host the Korean Englishman YouTube channel (Chris Jackson/PA)

Mr Carrot asked the King whether he had ever tried Korean food.

The YouTuber told PA: “He said he was a big fan of the food. He liked everything unless it was a bit too spicy.”

The reception took place shortly after Lunar New Year – celebrated by Chinese, South Korean, Vietnamese, Malaysian, Singaporean, Lao, Thai, Mongolian, Bruneian, Indonesian, Japanese, Cambodian, Filipino and East Timorese communities around the world.

In February 2022, the King and Queen Consort, when they were The Prince of Wales and The Duchess of Cornwall, visited Chinatown in London to mark Lunar New Year.

They visited local shops, organisations and communities, and the King joined a conversation about hate crime towards the Chinese and wider East and South-East Asian Communities.

Meanwhile, The Queen Consort visited the Chinese Information and Advice Centre where she met police officers, immigration case workers and clients.

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