THE King and Queen Consort will use two coaches on their coronation day – the modern Diamond Jubilee State Coach and the 260-year-old Gold State Coach.

Diamond Jubilee State Coach

The Northern Echo: File photo dated 14/10/19 of Queen Elizabeth II, accompanied by the then Prince of Wales and the then Duchess of Cornwall, returns to Buckingham Palace, London, in the Diamond Jubilee State Coach, having delivered The Queen's Speech. King Charles III

Charles and Camilla personally decided to make their 1.3-mile outward journey – known as the King’s Procession – from Buckingham Palace to Westminster Abbey in the more comfortable Diamond Jubilee State Coach.

The black carriage with gilded decorations – which is more than five metres long, weighs over three tonnes and needs six horses to pull it – is the newest in the Royal Mews. It has shock absorbers to stop it from swaying, and heating, internal lights and power windows.

Built in Australia, and first used by the Queen at the state opening of Parliament in 2014, it combines traditional craftsmanship and modern technology, with its aluminium body prevented from swaying by six hydraulic stabilisers.

Its interior is made from objects donated by more than 100 historic sites across Britain.

The seat handrails are from the Royal Yacht Britannia and it also contains fragments from Henry VIII’s warship the Mary Rose, Sir Isaac Newton’s apple tree and the Antarctic bases of Captain Scott and Sir Ernest Shackleton in its bodywork.

Wood from royal residences such as Buckingham Palace, Kensington Palace and Windsor Castle, as well as the Tower of London, 10 Downing Street and Althorp, the ancestral home of Diana, Princess of Wales, also form part of the carriage.

The gilded crown on the top of the coach is carved from oak from HMS Victory and can hold a camera to film journeys.

Gold State Coach

The Northern Echo: File photo dated 04/04/23 of the Gold State Coach on display at the Royal Mews in Buckingham Palace, London, ahead of King Charles III's Coronation on May 6. The King and Queen Consort will travel to the coronation in the modern Diamond Jubilee State

The grandest royal coach in the Royal Mews is more than 260 years old and made of giltwood, a thin layer of gold leaf over wood. It was first used by George III. Only a sovereign and their consort are permitted to travel in the historic Gold State Coach.

Charles and the Queen Consort will use it for the first time on their journey back to Buckingham Palace after being crowned in the Abbey.

For her 1953 coronation the late Queen rode both ways in the Gold State Coach, famously describing the bumpy experience as “horrible”. It must have been rather lacking in comforts, too, as a hot water bottle was strapped under the seat for Elizabeth II to keep her warm during the unseasonably cold day of her coronation in June 1953.

The coach was built in 1762, weighs four tonnes, is 3.6 metres tall and seven metres long, and needs eight horses to pull it.

It is suspended on leather straps and is said to creak like an old galleon as it rolls along. The four original leather straps which support the body of the coach were replaced 15 years ago to make it run better.

The carriage has been used at every coronation since 1831, but even the then-monarch William IV – who was known as the Sailor King – likened it to “being aboard a ship tossing in a rough sea”.

Queen Victoria was not a fan and complained of its “distressing oscillation”.

It will take 20 people to push it out of its permanent home in the Royal Mews into the courtyard ready for the coronation, with a window and a door having to be removed to create enough space for the huge carriage to pass through into the open air.

The coach features magnificent painted panels of Roman gods and goddesses, rich gilded sculptures including three cherubs on the roof – representing England, Scotland and Ireland – and four massive Triton figures above each wheel.

The front panel includes a figure of Britannia sitting on the banks of the River Thames, with the dome of St Paul’s Cathedral just visible in the city.

It was last seen on the streets of London for the Platinum Jubilee pageant last year, when it travelled empty except for archive footage of Elizabeth II on her coronation day projected onto its windows.

The Northern Echo: File photo dated 2/6/1953 of Queen Elizabeth II in the Gold State Coach returning to Buckingham Palace, London, after the Coronation. The King and Queen Consort will travel to the coronation in the modern Diamond Jubilee State Coach and return in the

Queen Elizabeth II in the Gold State Coach returning to Buckingham Palace, London, after the Coronation