William and Kate stepped in to help King Charles during first state visit

They were supporting the new monarch

Prince William and Kate Middleton
(Image credit: Photo by WPA Pool / Getty)

Charles III became King in September after Queen Elizabeth II sadly passed away, and his schedule is already as crowded as you'd expect.

On Tuesday, the monarch hosted his first state visit as he welcomed South African President Cyril Ramaphosa to the U.K., and he sent a pretty special welcoming party to collect the head of state from his hotel, according to Hello!.

Prince William and Princess Kate stepped in to give the President a warm welcome. They posed with him for a formal portrait, and shared it on social media with the caption: "A pleasure to welcome President @CyrilRamaphosa to the UK."

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The Prince and Princess of Wales accompanied the guest of honour to Horse Guards Parade, where the ceremonial welcome took place, before they all headed to Buckingham Palace.

Royal reporter Rebecca English was present during the visit and live-tweeted updates to her followers, starting with details on Princess Kate's sumptuous plum-coloured outfit.

"The Princess of Wales is in an Emilia Wickstead dress, Sean Barrett hat and The Prince of Wales Feathers Pendant," Rebecca wrote.

Sharing some footage from the visit, Rebecca explained: "Their Majesties are showing the President a range of artefacts from the @RCT [Royal Collection Trust] highlighting Anglo-South African relations including a magnificent chess set give to the Duke of Edinburgh - and a picture of the king (then Prince of Wales) with the Spice Girls!"

Commenting on the impressive Horse Guards Parade ceremonial arrangements, the Brigade Major of Headquarters Household Division, Lieutenant Colonel James Shaw said: "The state visit is a historic first: our first state visit for His Majesty the King and the President of South Africa, the first state visit in London since 2019, the first processional state visit on Horse Guards since 2018, and the first for almost everyone on parade" (via Hello!).

The Lieutenant Colonel added: "A huge amount of work has gone into preparing for the visit and we are very proud to support such an important national occasion."

Iris Goldsztajn
Iris Goldsztajn is a celebrity and royal news writer for Marie Claire. As a London-based freelance journalist, she writes about wellness, relationships, pop culture, beauty and more for the likes of InStyle, Women's Health, Bustle, Stylist and Red. Aside from her quasi-personal investment in celebs' comings and goings, Iris is especially interested in debunking diet culture and destigmatising mental health struggles. Previously, she was the associate editor for Her Campus, where she oversaw the style and beauty news sections, as well as producing gift guides, personal essays and celebrity interviews. There, she worked remotely from Los Angeles, after returning from a three-month stint as an editorial intern for Cosmopolitan.com in New York. As an undergraduate at the University of California, Los Angeles, she interned at goop and C California Style and served as Her Campus' national style and LGBTQ+ editor. Iris was born and raised in France by a French father and an English mother. Her Spotify Wrapped is riddled with country music and One Direction, and she can typically be found eating her body weight in cheap chocolate.