The King has made a personal apology to the Queen’s former bridesmaid Lady Pamela Hicks for not inviting her to the coronation.

Lady Pamela, 94, will not be at Westminster Abbey on 6 May – but her daughter said she “was not offended at all” by the snub.

The family received a phone call from Buckingham Palace to say the guest list had been slimmed down to reduce the cost for the state.

Her daughter India Hicks wrote on Instagram: “One of the King’s personal secretaries was passing on a message from the King. They explained that this coronation was to be very different to the Queen’s.

The King was sending his great love and apologies, he was offending many family and friends with the reduced list.”

However, Ms Hicks wrote that rather than take offence, her mother replied: “How very, very sensible.

“Invitations based on meritocracy not aristocracy.”

She said her mother added: “I am going to follow with great interest the events of this new reign.”

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Ms Hicks said family members initially hung up the phone when someone called saying they were from Buckingham Palace.

But she replied: “Ah, it probably is Buckingham Palace.”

She added that she had become her mother’s “human hearing aid” and often received calls on her behalf.

Lady Pamela was 24 when she served as the Queens’s bridesmaid and later became her lady-in-waiting.

She is the daughter of the King’s great-uncle Earl Mountbatten, who was murdered by the IRA in 1979.

She is a great-great-granddaughter of Queen Victoria and at 94 is her oldest surviving descendent.