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  1. ITV Report

The Queen praises 'passionate and creative' Charles on his 70th birthday

  • Video report by ITV News Royal Editor Chris Ship

The Queen has paid a heartfelt tribute to the Prince of Wales on his 70th birthday, describing him as a "dedicated and respected heir to the throne to stand comparison with any in history".

The head of state rarely makes public comments about her children but she used a black-tie dinner staged in Charles's honour to praise him as "his own man, passionate and creative".

She added he was a "wonderful father" at the event at Buckingham Palace.

Earlier in the day Charles arrived at a tea party with fellow septuagenarians, where he hinted he may start slowing down.

The Prince of Wales was given a balloon by reporters waiting to greet him as he arrived to host the tea party for volunteers with Camilla at St James’ Palace.

When asked by ITV News whether he had plans to "slow down", Charles said "you may see it slowly but surely".

But Camilla disagreed, adding "I doubt it".

Asked how he was feeling, Charles replied "older".

He joked: "I'm not sure. It's rather like indigestion. 'Many happy returns; is not quite the same thing as you get older."

Charles arrives alongside Camilla for his 70th birthday party at the Palace. Credit: PA

After the tea party Charles arrived at Buckingham Palace for a 70th birthday party.

He was joined by the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge, and the Duke and Duchess of Sussex, as well as newlyweds Princess Eugenie and Jack Brooksbank.

William and Kate arrive. Credit: PA
Harry and Meghan, and Princess Eugenie and husband Jack Brooksbank make their arrivals. Credit: PA

The Queen is famed for her wit and her toast to her son and heir was peppered with her trademark humour including the comment he was "a Duchy original".

Over his 70 years, Philip and I have seen Charles become a champion of conservation and the arts, a great charitable leader - a dedicated and respected heir to the throne to stand comparison with any in history - and a wonderful father.

Most of all, sustained by his wife Camilla, he is his own man, passionate and creative.

– The Queen

The earlier tea party was hosted by Charles and Camilla for 70 other people who were born in the same year - 1948.

The 70-year-olds were nominated by the charity Age UK for giving their time to their local communities.

Most were volunteers who give service to charities of which Charles and Camilla are patrons, like Bernardo’s and The Prince’s Trust.