BBC documentary features previously unseen footage of King spanning 70 years


The royal family in previously unseen personal moments and the King flying solo are among clips to feature in a new BBC documentary.

Charles R: The Making of a Monarch will offer audiences a chance to view unseen and rarely seen footage of Charles, telling his more than 70-year story as heir to the throne, through his own words.

Buckingham Palace has granted the BBC exclusive access to unseen footage of Charles from the 1969 documentary, Royal Family.

The footage shows the royal family enjoying a bonfire at Sandringham, the then Prince Charles flying solo, and the future King on a private visit to Malta in 1968.

Other intimate family moments that have never been seen before include the Queen, Charles and other members of the family taking a trip by hovercraft and the family sitting down to dinner onboard the Royal Yacht Britannia.

BBC Studios has also been given special permission to use clips from the royal family’s private home movie footage, showing the King’s early love of nature, gardening and animals.

The BBC said the programme is told through the King’s own words, as recorded through the decades.

Viewers will hear the King discuss his childhood, including his memories of the Queen’s coronation, as well as his school days, adolescence, and investiture as Prince of Wales.

It also contains recollections of the King’s military service and personal commentary of his commitment to charitable work, as well as his private passions and the role of the institution he now heads up.

Five never before seen images from the programme were released on Tuesday including shots of the then prince flying a plane solo, a visit to the Royal Mint with the Queen, a trip to Malta when he was young, and a shot of the prince decorating a Christmas tree at Windsor.

Simon Young, the BBC’s head of history said: “It’s a real privilege to be trusted with such rare, unseen archive material to create a new and distinctive portrait of someone so famous and photographed.

“As their majesties’ coronation approaches, this film will give audiences a fresh insight into his remarkable life.”

Claire Popplewell, creative director for BBC Studios events productions, added: “This documentary brings audiences a treasure trove of scenes filmed across seven decades in the life of the King.

“Unique and unseen moments with contemporary archive sources and the spoken words of His Majesty, Charles R: The Making of a Monarch tells the story of how a prince became a king.”

Charles R: The Making of a Monarch will debut on BBC One and BBC iPlayer on Sunday April 30.


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