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King to appear on cover of Big Issue ahead of 75th birthday

A portrait of the King will appear on the front page of the Big Issue next week, it has been announced.

The portrait, by renowned photographer Rankin, will appear in the magazine on Monday, a day before the King’s 75th birthday.

Charles writes in the magazine about the importance of finding practical ways to bridge the gap between food waste and food need.

The King on the front of the Big Issue magazine (Rankin/Rankin Creative/Big Issue
The King on the front of the Big Issue magazine (Rankin/Rankin Creative/Big Issue

He explains that this has led him to use his birthday to shine the spotlight on food insecurity and food waste to create a “lasting legacy to help others”.

Rankin said: “It was an absolute honour to shoot this specifically for the Big Issue and specifically around the Coronation Food Project, which I’m a big supporter of, and is something we don’t talk about enough.

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“I’ve always thought that he’s a very resilient human being. I think that’s what I got from him, that kind of steely determination.”

Coronation Food Project
The Big Issue is backing the Coronation Food Project (LoveFrom)

Paul McNamee, editor of the Big Issue, said: “King Charles’ support for the Big Issue goes back decades. He opened one of our London offices in the 90s, when he met an old school friend, who was selling the magazine.

“The King’s attachment to the Big Issue has remained strong since, as has that of the entire royal family and we’re delighted he gave us his time, and his words.

“Equally, we understand the pressures millions of Britons face over food costs and supplies, and we back the Coronation Food Project.

“The cover comes at a key moment, when vendors face a tough winter. This will hopefully boost their sales, which is at the heart of why we exist.”

Lord Bird, founder of the Big Issue, said: “It’s grand that King Charles has his portrait on the cover of the Big Issue.

“His Majesty has long been a supporter of The Big Issue. He opened London Big Issue offices. During one opening, some 26 years ago, he met one of his old school friends who was then selling The Big Issue.”