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REBECCA ENGLISH: It’s the Charles and Joe chatshow… the King didn’t raise an eyebrow at Biden’s enthusiastically tactile welcome

There is always much talk of the ‘special relationship’ when a US President comes to town.

And at Windsor Castle yesterday things were apparently so special that the King didn’t raise an eyebrow at Joe Biden‘s enthusiastically tactile welcome – and tea ran over because the pair enjoyed chatting so much.

The only cloud in the blue skies over the Berkshire residence was the American delegation’s decision to attend the meeting – with climate action at the top of its to-do list – in a fleet of five helicopters.

The trip had been billed as ‘very much not a state visit’, but the hand of friendship from Mr Biden was clearly and warmly extended in the King’s direction over almost two hours.

The US President flew to Windsor straight after meeting the Prime Minister.

REBECCA ENGLISH: There is always much talk of the 'special relationship' when a US President comes to town. And at Windsor Castle yesterday things were apparently so special that the King didn't raise an eyebrow at Joe Biden's (right) enthusiastically tactile welcome ¿ and tea ran over because the pair enjoyed chatting so much REBECCA ENGLISH: There is always much talk of the 'special relationship' when a US President comes to town. And at Windsor Castle yesterday things were apparently so special that the King didn't raise an eyebrow at Joe Biden's (right) enthusiastically tactile welcome ¿ and tea ran over because the pair enjoyed chatting so much

REBECCA ENGLISH: There is always much talk of the ‘special relationship’ when a US President comes to town. And at Windsor Castle yesterday things were apparently so special that the King didn’t raise an eyebrow at Joe Biden’s (right) enthusiastically tactile welcome – and tea ran over because the pair enjoyed chatting so much

REBECCA ENGLISH: At one point Mr Biden appeared reluctant to end a conversation with one of the Welsh Guards lined up at the castle as Charles tried to usher him along REBECCA ENGLISH: At one point Mr Biden appeared reluctant to end a conversation with one of the Welsh Guards lined up at the castle as Charles tried to usher him along

REBECCA ENGLISH: At one point Mr Biden appeared reluctant to end a conversation with one of the Welsh Guards lined up at the castle as Charles tried to usher him along

He was greeted by the King, who had been waiting for around five minutes, with the Comptroller of the Royal Household Lieutenant Colonel Michael Vernon and his equerry, Lieutenant Colonel Jonny Thompson.

The politician stepped slowly out of the car and the two men shook hands. As they walked to the dais, Mr Biden placed a hand on the King’s back. 

The President was seen to do this twice more after inspecting the guard of honour, formed of the Prince of Wales’s Company of the Welsh Guards.

He did not make contact when he met the late Queen at Windsor two years ago. A palace source suggested that the idea this was a supposed breach of protocol was ‘very old-fashioned’.

REBECCA ENGLISH: The politician stepped slowly out of the car and the two men shook hands. As they walked to the dais, Mr Biden placed a hand on the King's back REBECCA ENGLISH: The politician stepped slowly out of the car and the two men shook hands. As they walked to the dais, Mr Biden placed a hand on the King's back

REBECCA ENGLISH: The politician stepped slowly out of the car and the two men shook hands. As they walked to the dais, Mr Biden placed a hand on the King’s back

At one point Mr Biden appeared reluctant to end a conversation with one of the Welsh Guards lined up at the castle as Charles tried to usher him along.

The 80-year-old President and the King, 74, watched the military march past before going inside for tea.

Their private meeting ran over by around 20 minutes. They later spoke to the Climate Finance Mobilisation Forum of financial and philanthropic leaders from the UK and the US.

A spokesman for the King said: ‘You will have seen for yourselves the personal warmth between His Majesty and the President.’

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