November 14 is the 74th birthday of our new king. As Charles III, he has brought in the new Carolean era – indeed Carolean has been chosen as one of the words of the year.
Major events in Royal life are always accompanied by a fresh release of memorabilia. From Coronation mugs to Jubilee tea towels, almost every household has had at least one item pass through its doors at one time or other.
The Royal Family mean different things to different people, from the staunch royalist to the anti-monarchist, but none can dispute that their presence and impact on public life is as far-reaching and important today as it has ever been.
Those worried that the campaigning frankness of Prince Charles, especially on matters of the environment and architecture, would continue once he had donned the crown, making the role more political, can now rest assured that will not happen.
The new king has clearly learnt from the unrivalled experience of his mother, the late Queen, and is set to put his own stable regal stamp on the coming years.
This creates the ideal circumstances for cultivating a new era of collecting in the royal memorabilia sphere, and this will undoubtedly start with the Coronation in May.
The king is known for wanting a stripped back monarchy and less opulent start to his reign – a noble and sensitive approach in these straitened times – but even he is unlikely to deny his many devotees the opportunity to obtain a small keepsake of what will still be a grand and landmark occasion.
The earliest surviving pieces of Royal memorabilia, some dating to the previous Carolean period of Charles II, can make six-figure sums. However, even Diamond Jubilee mugs specially made for children to mark Queen Victoria’s 60 years on the throne in 1897, appear at auction regularly and can be had for around £150-200. Similar prices can be had for subsequent Coronation mugs, including those for George V and Edward VIII, whose short-lived reign meant that he was never actually crowned.