Jeremy Corbyn arrived for a state banquet held at Buckingham Palace wearing full white tie, to the surprise of some.
The Labour leader had refused to confirm whether or not he would wear the full formal garb to the banquet, held to mark the first state visit to the UK in ten years by a Chinese premier.
Corbyn has form on ignoring Royal tradition and caused a furore earlier this year when he remained silent during the singing of the national anthem at a Battle of Britain commemoration event.
Attending Tuesday’s dinner at the Palace in honour of Xi Jinping’s visit, however, he appeared to go with tradition…
Jeremy Corbyn makes his way to the ballroom pic.twitter.com/XgilyrrHRr— PA Royal Reporters (@PARoyal) October 20, 2015
Look at Jeremy Corbyn in his little bow tie! Adorable. pic.twitter.com/qPTq5QzTtP— Jamie Ross (@JamieRoss7) October 20, 2015
Reaction to the Opposition leader's get-up was mixed...
Jeremy Corbyn voted against tax credit cuts then got himself into white tie in time to join the Queen at a state banquet. Impressive.— Susan (@marthasydenham) October 20, 2015
Corbyn in white-tie. Sell out. pic.twitter.com/UM455lsGkI— Guido Fawkes (@GuidoFawkes) October 20, 2015
Good God. Comrade Corbyn not only wearing white tie, but with his dress coat and waistcoat the right relative lengths. Well done him.— George Scott ن (@GRScott_Oxon) October 20, 2015
Feel sorry for Corbyn tonight struggling to wear white bow tie -what started as last minute Lab democracy stunt has backfired so very badly— Spencer Pitfield (@SpencerPitfield) October 20, 2015
I'm glad Corbyn wore white tie. Imagine the outcry if he hadn't. Just can't win in some people's eyes. https://t.co/SpOy422bkE— Michael Barge (@bargemUK) October 20, 2015
Jeremy Corbyn looks positively desperate in formal white bow tie at #ChineseStateVisit banquet - the joys of Leadership!— Spencer Pitfield (@SpencerPitfield) October 20, 2015
At the weekend, China’s UK ambassador said that Corbyn should avoid raising the issue of human rights at the banquet.
Speaking on the BBC’s Andrew Marr Show, Ambassador Xiaoming said: “You think Labour party will raise this issue at a state banquet? I don't think so. The president is here for co-operation, for partnership, he's not here for a debate about human rights.
“We all know China and the UK differ very much because we have different history, different culture, we are in different stage of development.
“It's natural we have differences, even in regard to human rights. In China we care more about rights to better life, to better job, to better housing."
He went on: “I think the State Banquet is for Her Majesty – it’s her show. Either Jeremy Corbyn or others are her guests.
“I think the British people are very gentlemen[ly], very smart. They know how to behave on occasions like this. But we do not shy away from discussions about human rights.
“In fact I had a good meeting with Jeremy Corbyn last week.”