LONDON - King Charles has been pictured with his official red box in which the British monarch receives government documents, in a photograph released by Buckingham Palace on Friday as the new king takes up his official duties.

The locked red despatch box is an image strongly associated with the British monarchy and one that the late Queen Elizabeth was regularly pictured with.

It contains papers from the British government and some Commonwealth countries which are sent to the monarch from the office of the private secretary.

The image was taken in the Eighteenth Century Room at Buckingham Palace last week.

In its background is a photograph showing Charles's late parents Queen Elizabeth and Prince Philip. Elizabeth, Britain's longest reigning monarch, died on Sept. 8 aged 96.

(Reporting by Sachin Ravikumar, Editing by Rosalba O'Brien)