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Mastermind behind King Charles's coronation bestowed with a 'quick' knighthood 

The Duke of Norfolk, his role as Earl Marshal, walks in the procession as 200 members of the Royal Navy pull the coffin of the late Queen Elizabeth II to death at Balmoral Castle on September 8

King Charles has quietly issued his first knighthood since becoming king.

The monarch paid tribute to the 18th Duke of Norfolk, Britain’s oldest peer, just 10 days after inheriting the throne from his mother.

Knighthood was decided by the Queen during her lifetime and announced in her Birthday Honors List in June. But no ceremony had yet taken place, meaning the Duke was barred from wearing his Royal Victorian Order, GCVO, medal at his funeral on September 19.

So, on the night of September 18, the King found a moment to hand over the badge and perform the distinction – also known as the “doubling” – in which he placed a sword on each shoulder of the Duke in recognition of his work as an earl. Marshal of the Royal Household.

The Duke of Norfolk, his role as Earl Marshal, walks in the procession as 200 members of the Royal Navy pull the coffin of the late Queen Elizabeth II to death at Balmoral Castle on September 8

The Duke of Norfolk, his role as Earl Marshal, walks in the procession as 200 members of the Royal Navy pull the coffin of the late Queen Elizabeth II to death at Balmoral Castle on September 8

The monarch paid tribute to the 18th Duke of Norfolk, Britain's oldest peer, just 10 days after inheriting the throne from his mother.

The monarch paid tribute to the 18th Duke of Norfolk, Britain’s oldest peer, just 10 days after inheriting the throne from his mother.

A source said: “The voice acting is what makes you a knight. The king had to give it to him with a sash so he would be dressed appropriately at the funeral the next day.

Another source described the Chivalry as a ‘quickie’ organized to thank the Duke for his hard work following the Queen’s passing. It is believed to have taken place in a back room of Buckingham Palace. The ceremony has not yet appeared in the court circular.

The Queen personally loved the Duke of Norfolk and encouraged him in his seven-year quest to save his marriage to Georgina Fitzalan-Howard, Duchess of Norfolk, which finally ended in divorce earlier this year.

The late monarch died before she had a chance to complete the process of knighting her friend, and shortly before he announced his engagement to girlfriend Francesca ‘Chica’ Herbert.

The Duke, now styled Edward Fitzalan-Howard, 18th Duke of Norfolk, GCVO, DL, is currently planning a wedding in November and carrying out his duties as the man in charge of the king’s coronation.

The Queen was said to be personally fond of the Duke of Norfolk (pictured) and encouraged him on his seven-year quest to save his marriage to Georgina Fitzalan-Howard, Duchess of Norfolk, which ultimately ended in divorce more early this year.

The Queen personally loved the Duke of Norfolk (pictured) and encouraged him on his seven-year quest to save his marriage to Georgina Fitzalan-Howard, Duchess of Norfolk, which finally ended in divorce earlier this year

Eagle Eyes noticed that the Duke, known simply as Eddie to his friends, did not wear his GCVO cross to any of the events during the ten-day mourning period leading up to the funeral, but did worn at the funeral itself. It looks like he also found a chance to polish his other medals which looked tarnished from previous mourning events, but shone like new as he took his place on the mall wearing his new blue sash at the funeral.

Last week, the Duke’s niece, society darling Lady Kinvara Balfour, praised her uncle in Tatler magazine, saying: ‘Uncle Eddie has done a truly outstanding job. What a show of rare elegance, efficiency and precision he produced for our nation and the world – just as the late Queen Elizabeth II herself did. He’s an incredible father of five children, a grandfather too… And he was a Formula 1 driver. He’s a bit of a legend.

The Duke resides in his ancestral seat, Arundel Castle in West Sussex, but will not be living there with his new wife Chica when she becomes Duchess of Norfolk. Instead, they chose to live on a more comfortable nearby farm.

His ex-wife Georgina, Duchess of Norfolk, 60, will live at the nearby house in Angmering Park and owns 100 acres of the estate, which forms a small part of 16,000 acres owned by the Duke in the South Downs.

The Duke was banned from driving last week, after using his mobile phone while driving in Battersea, south-west London, on April 7, and although he admitted to the offence, his legal team tried to avoid a ban due to ‘exceptional hardship’ – claiming he needed his license to stage the king’s upcoming coronation, known as the Golden Orb.

A friend of the staunchly Catholic Duke, England’s highest-ranking duke and an off-bench peer, said last week he believed the magistrates had made the right decision not to accept his defense and that he was “grateful” they didn’t.

The source said: ‘Eddie acknowledges that his attempt to avoid a driving ban went haywire and feels very sorry for upsetting the King. He plans to keep it low key and for a month or two and continue to do the nation proud by planning Golden Orb.

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