Young debutantes put on a charming display for the annual Queen Charlotte’s Ball
Princesses for a day: Young debutantes put on a charming display for the annual Queen Charlotte’s Ball as they dazzle in their white ballgowns and glittering tiaras for the high-society showpiece
- Debutantes were last night introduced to London Society in the 240th anniversary of Queen Charlotte’s Ball
- The event, which took place in Dartmouth House, London, sees the young ladies curtsey to a giant cake
- In the late 18th century, the London season – culminating in the ball – was seen as a ‘marriage market’
- Tickets for the event cost £2,500 and feature the finest champagne, a sumptuous feast and dancing
Young debutantes put on a charming display in a sea of white ballgowns as they attended the annual Queen Charlotte’s ball at Dartmouth House in London.
The affluent young women were joined by their partners and parents as they made their society debut in the grand setting last night.
The pinnacle event in the London Season, the ball sees young women – from aristocratic, wealthy or famous families – gather together to enjoy a sumptuous feast, the finest champagne, and dancing – and with tables starting at £2,500, attendance is strictly for the well-to-do.
Debutantes posed for a picture yesterday ahead of the 240th anniversary of Queen Charlotte’s Ball in Dartmouth House
The special event for the daughters’ of aristocrats and society’s elite sees the young ladies introduced to London society
Among those dressed up of the big event was British ballerina Darcey Bussell’s daughter, Phoebe Forbes, second right
In 1780 the first debutante’s Ball was held by King George III to celebrate the birthday of his wife Queen Charlotte and raised money for a maternity hospital.
Society girls were presented to the monarch and it became an annual event and important as a marriage market for the upper echelons of society.
The London Season runs for six months of the year including sporting events, cocktail parties, dances and concerts and the Ball is the pinnacle of this season.
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Usually aged between 17 and 20 and wearing designer dresses, the debutantes attend the grand ball where they are ‘presented’ to guests and curtsy before the Queen Charlotte Cake.
After the present Queen terminated the practice of introducing debutantes at royal garden parties in 1957, Lady Howard de Walden followed by then editor of Tatler, Peter Townend, continued the tradition and on his death Peter nominated former debutantes Jennie Hallam-Peel and Patricia Woodall to take over running of The London Season.
It is now focussed on raising money for children in need worldwide and the Queen Charlotte’s Ball has been held in Shanghai and Dubai as well as various grand venues in London.
The London Season runs for six months of the year including sporting events, cocktail parties, dances and concerts and the Ball is the pinnacle of this season
The debutantes are brought to the ball by their escorts which was held this year at Dartmouth House
Tickets for the much-anticipated event, which is the highlight of the London season, cost £2,500
One of the highlights of the event involves the three winning debutantes cutting the cake with a ceremonial sword
The debutantes are brought into the main room and have to curtsey to the Queen Charlotte cake in a 240-year-old tradition
The event is the highlight of the annual London society calendar and sees the young ladies introduced to society
In a surprisingly modern twist, this young debutante is using her iPhone as a mirror to put on her lipstick
In 1780 the first debutante’s Ball was held by King George III to celebrate the birthday of his wife Queen Charlotte and raised money for a maternity hospital
These girls are practicing ahead of the ball to ensure that everything during the night goes perfectly
The London Season was established in 1780 and has been a major part of the social calendar ever since
Towards the end of the 18th century, The London Season was viewed by the aristocracy as a ‘marriage market’
Chairman of The London Season, Jennie Hallam-Peel – a former debutante herself – greets this year’s cohort
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