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Belgium

Princess Elisabeth takes centre stage as Belgium’s Royal Family celebrates military


©️Royal Palace, Belgium. Photographer: Bas Bogaerts

The heir to the Belgian throne, Elisabeth, Duchess of Brabant took centre stage as her family took part in an important annual event for the country’s military. Princess Elisabeth was joined by her parents, King Philippe and Queen Mathilde, and her siblings for a ceremony marking the start of the academic year for the Royal Military Academy where the future monarch is currently a recruit.

Elisabeth, in full fatigues, posed for photos alongside her parents and her younger brothers, Prince Gabriel and Prince Emmanuel, and little sister, Princess Eleonore, at the event which took place in Brussels on October 8th 2020.

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It was the first major appearance for the whole family since a court ruled that King Philippe’s half sister was entitled to use royal styling and titles. She is now known as HRH Princess Delphine. However, there was no mention of family issues and the focus at this ceremony was on Elisabeth and her fellow recruits.

King Philippe had warm words for them all as he gave a speech in chilly and wet conditions at the school. He spoke of everything those training this year had already accomplished and he told them ”you will succeed because you will have lived…the values of the Royal Military School – a sense of honour, self-discipline, engagement, courage, respect.”

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Queen Mathilde looked especially proud of her eldest child who is the first Belgian princess to undergo the year long military training course.

Princess Elisabeth began her training in September 2020 at an initiation camp with the Royal Family later sharing images of her as she began her course. The official opening of the training year marks the solemn entry of all new recruits into the school.

About author

Lydia Starbuck is Associate Editor at Royal Central and the main producer and presenter of the Royal Central Podcast and Royal Central Extra. Lydia is also a pen name of June Woolerton, a journalist and writer with over twenty years experience in TV, radio, print and online. June has been a reporter, producer and editor, picking up several awards over the years. She's appeared on outlets including BBC 5 Live, BBC Radio Ulster and BBC Local Radio and has also helped set up a commercial radio station. June is also an accomplished writer with a wide range of material published online and in print. She is the author of two novels, published as e-books. She is also a marriage registrar and ceremony celebrant.