Hundreds of Team GB Olympic and Paralympic athletes descended to Buckingham Palace on Tuesday evening for a reception hosted by Her Majesty The Queen and other members of the Royal Family, to celebrate the sporting heroes’ success in Rio.
Senior members of the Royal Family who attended the reception were The Queen, the Duke of Edinburgh, the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge, Prince Harry, the Duke of York, and Princess Anne.
The Duke and Duchess of Gloucester and The Duke of Kent also met the athletes in one of the largest engagements for the family in recent times.
Princess Eugenie was also scheduled to attend the event but pulled out at the last minute. Aides have refused to disclose the reason why the 28-year-old was absent for the event.
Some of the athletes who were being celebrated at the palace include boxer Nicola Adams, Team GB’s oldest gold medal winner Nick Skelton and Paralympic swimmer Ellie Simmonds.
Speaking at the event, five times Paralympic champion, Hannah Cockroft MBE said: “It was the first time meeting so many royals at once, just to have the whole Royal Family work their way down the line was absolutely phenomenal. The fact that they are so excited about what we’ve done for the country is an honour”.
Some notable absences from the reception included Mo Farah, Jessica Ennis Hill, and Jason Kenny & Laura Trott who are on their honeymoon after recently getting married.
Before the reception at Buckingham Palace, the Team GB athletes attended a homecoming parade in London, and in the previous day in Manchester.
Many thousands of people gathered on the streets to welcome back the athletes after Great Britain’s greatest ever Olympic Games in over 100 years having finished 2nd place on the medal table.