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Holland celebrates as Willem-Alexander becomes King

With a signature on a parchment of abdication and a kiss for her son, Queen Beatrix of the Netherlands brought to an end her thirty three year rule - to the cheers of thousands of her people.

That son, now King Willem-Alexander, ushered in a new era and ushered his young family onto the palace balcony to even louder applause.

ITV News Europe Editor James Mates reports:


King of Netherlands waves to crowds from Royal Palace

The new king of the Netherlands Willhem-Alexander, his wife Queen Maxima and Princess Beatrix, who abdicated today, have appeared on the balcony of the Royal Palace in Amsterdam and waved to the crowds.

Princess Beatrix of Netherlands (C), her son, Dutch King Willem-Alexander (L) and his wife Queen Maxima Credit: REUTERS/Paul Vreeker
Thousands of well-wishers gather in Amsterdam's Dam Square. Credit: REUTERS/Laurent Dubrule

In pictures: The abdication ceremony in Holland

Queen Beatrix of the Netherlands prepares to sign an act of abdication. Credit: Reuters
Dutch Crown Prince Willem-Alexander holds the hand of his mother Queen Beatrix during an abdication ceremony. Credit: Reuters
Queen Beatrix passes the act of abdication to her son Crown Prince Willem-Alexander, sitting next to his wife Crown Princess Maxima. Credit: Reuters


Amsterdam prepares for the crowning of a new King

The city of Amsterdam is preparing for the swearing in of a new King today, as Queen Beatrix will officially abdicate from the throne.

Yesterday the Queen thanked the Dutch people in a final address before her abdication and urged them to support her son, Crown Prince Willem-Alexander.

Women look at t-shirts portraying Crown Prince Willem-Alexander in Amsterdam Credit: Reuters
A man leaves a shop selling t-shirts of Crown Prince Willem-Alexander in Amsterdam Credit: Reuters

Timeline: The crowning of Prince Willem-Alexander

Here is the timeline of events for the abdication of Queen Beatrix and the crowning of King Willem-Alexander (all times are BST):

  • 08:30-09:00 - Gun salute
  • 09:00-09:30 - Abdication of Queen Beatrix in the Moses Hall of the Royal Palace Amsterdam
  • 09:30-09:50 - His Majesty King Willem-Alexander, Her Majesty Queen Máxima and Her Royal Highness Princess Beatrix appear on the balcony of the Royal Palace
  • 13:00-14:30 - Swearing in and investiture of the King, who will deliver an address and be sworn in
  • 15:30 - The King and his retinue proceed to the Royal Palace Amsterdam
  • 15:30-17:00 - Reception in the Royal Palace Amsterdam
  • 18:30-18:45 - The Song for the King will be performed in the presence of the King and Queen, this will take place at the EYE Film Museum via a video link
  • 19:45-20:30 - The King and Queen will take part in a water pageant with their daughters on the River IJ
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