During a stroll of a few minutes in a pouring rain on the square of downtown Saint-Denis, in front of a town hall paved for the occasion with French and British flags, the king was introduced to PSG footballer Presnel Kimpembe, in tracksuit of the France team, and Marie-Antoinette Katoto, striker of the Parisian club.

Former Chelsea star Didier Drogba was also present to welcome the king. Alongside Nasser Al-Khelaïfi, they offered the monarch a PSG shirt in the name of Charles and bearing the number 3.

Earlier, Charles and Camilla went with the wife of the French president, Brigitte Macron, to a room located in front of the establishment of the Legion of Honor where sports facilities had been erected for the occasion.

For a quarter of an hour, they watched schoolchildren and college students from Saint-Denis practice various sports activities in this disadvantaged city that currently hosts the Rugby World Cup and, next summer, the 2024 Olympic Games. Camilla and Brigitte Macron exchanged a few ping-pong balls in front of the cameras.

Queen Camilla of England plays table tennis, next to King Charles III and the wife of French President Brigitte Macron, during a visit to Saint-Denis, near Paris, September 21, 2023 © HANNAH MCKAY / POOL / AFP

"I thought it was great that they spent some time here with the children, talking to animators. It was a great moment for all of us," 19-year-old table tennis player Prithika Pavade, a member of the Saint-Denis club and 2020 European champion under 21, told AFP after playing a short game with the queen consort.

The royal couple concluded their 45-minute visit to Seine-Saint-Denis by crossing the Basilica of Saint-Denis, necropolis of the kings of France, from which they left around 13:00.

© 2023 AFP