British Embassy in Beirut celebrates King Charles III and Queen Camilla’s coronation


The British Ambassador to Lebanon, Hamish Cowell CMG, hosted a celebration of the Coronation of King Charles III and Queen Camilla on Wednesday, 10 May, at the Sursock Palace Gardens in Beirut. The evening showcased the best of British and Lebanese talent.

Internationally-renowned Lebanese musician Guy Manoukian performed a blend of British and Lebanese music. The Royal Academy of Music’s Kyan String Quartet flew out from the UK, especially for the occasion. And Lebanon-based British Artist Tom Young exhibited work about historic Anglo-Lebanon connections around the time of Lebanon’s Independence in 1943.


Guests were treated to classic British food and drink, including ‘Fish & Chips’ and ‘Coronation Chicken’, and traditional dishes from around the region cooked by ‘Soufra’, the kitchen founded by refugees.

The event was held in the presence of their Excellencies Fadi Alameh MP, representing Speaker Nabih Berri, and Minister of Environment Nasser Yassin, representing Prime Minister Najib Mikati. Several dignitaries from the Government of Lebanon, the diplomatic corps, military officials, business leaders and media figures attended the event.

Addressing the guests, Ambassador Cowell said, “I am happy to welcome you all here in the beautiful Sursock Palace to celebrate the coronation of His Majesty King Charles the Third. And, in my first year here, to celebrate the strong ties of friendship between the UK and Lebanon.”

The restoration of the Sursock Palace [after the port blast] symbolises Beirut’s renewal and how Lebanon can rebuild itself after terrible events. But Sursock is also a reminder that rebuilding from a catastrophe or a crisis is about more than restoring the integrity of physical structures. It is also about restoring confidence in the state’s and public structures’ integrity. That is why, like other international friends of Lebanon, the UK will continue to push for progress in the port investigation and accountability and justice for all those affected.

During his Coronation, His Majesty The King promised, ‘I come here not to be served, but to serve’. That commitment is particularly important in a country in a crisis, as Lebanon is. In my first year in Lebanon, I have been inspired by meeting those here dedicated to that same spirit of public service, including civil society groups working with the vulnerable and public servants and security personnel working on a fraction of their salaries to keep their institutions running.

“I hope that Lebanon’s leaders will – in that same spirit of service – work urgently together in the public and national interest to resolve the economic and political crises. Like Lebanon’s many international friends, we stand ready to help. But it is first and foremost for Lebanon and its leaders to agree on the urgently-needed path to reform and renewal,” added the Embassy.


Guests were also invited to donate to the ‘’Becky’s Button’’ campaign in memory of the British Embassy’s beloved colleague Rebecca Dykes who was tragically killed in 2017. Becky’s Button is a safety alarm for women and girls distributed to some of the most vulnerable women in Lebanon. Food Blessed, a Lebanese NGO, collected leftover food and spread it to needy families.

Our event was made possible thanks to our sponsors, including MANA Automotive Land Rover and Aston Martin, Siren Associates, Ark Group, Diageo, Clos St Thomas, Elmir Craft Beer, and G4S.

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