‘Forced’: Prince William’s surprise King move

‘Forced’: Prince William’s surprise King move

The Prince of Wales is set to return to full-time royal duties this week and to take on a truly unprecedented role.

In the UK, it takes 391 guided learning hours to become a certified level two beauty therapist while a fast track plumbing course takes 160 hours. (Writing these stories really takes my Google search history into some strange, dark territory.)

But to be King? That is a job One is dumped in with precisely zero hours of experience, no board certification or log book hours or on-the-job training. (Just winning (?) the genetic lottery and managing to make it to adulthood without smallpox or a paper cut killing you.)

Which is what makes this latest news about Prince William worth sitting up and paying attention to. The 41-year-old prince is reportedly set to get a King-ternship, even though the current occupier of the throne remains fully compos mentis and working from home in his Turnbull & Asser dressing gown.

William is, per a new report, about to get a “dry run” at doing the top job.

Prince William, The Prince of Wales, is said to be doing a “dry run” as King. Picture: Kin Cheung – WPA Pool/Getty Images
Prince William, The Prince of Wales, is said to be doing a “dry run” as King. Picture: Kin Cheung – WPA Pool/Getty Images
On Wednesday, Prince George, Princess Charlotte and Prince Louis are set to return to school after their three-week Easter half term break and their father is similarly slated to get back to full-time royal duties.

However it is obviously not just his wife Kate the Princess of Wales who is on sick leave but his father King Charles too.

Even though His Majesty and his fountain pens are still scribbling away on official State business at home and even though Prime Minister Rishi Sunak still has to turn up once a week to listen to His Majesty bang on about the dwindling badger population and whatever his good friend the Dalai Lama has been WhatsApping him about, the King’s public-facing role has been largely put on hold on doctors’ orders.

But monarchy only works if it’s visible and out there pressing the flesh and so unto the breach William is now set to step. The 41-year-old is set to get an introductory, trial ‘reign’ of a sort, according to the Daily Beast’s Tom Sykes.

A former royal courtier told Sykes: “William and Kate had hoped to have several decades as Prince and Princess of Wales, and, God willing, they will still get them. But what is interesting about the next few months is that William is being forced into a dry run at being king much sooner than he might have imagined such a thing would come to pass.

“Of course he doesn’t welcome it, but there will certainly be some fascinating straws in the wind about what the reign of ‘King Billy’ will look like.”

Someone slap a big ‘P’ plate on the front of Buckingham Palace please!

Prince William has been “forced into a dry run at being king” says a royal courtier. Picture: Chris Jackson/Getty Images For Buckingham Palace


Prince William has been “forced into a dry run at being king” says a royal courtier. Picture: Chris Jackson/Getty Images For Buckingham Palace
So too, a friend of the Waleses’ told the Beast: “In many ways the next few weeks and months will be a template for [William’s] future reign because he will have similar personnel available after he succeeds to the throne, even if that doesn’t happen for many years.”

However, don’t expect to see the prince suddenly adopting his father’s compulsive, unrelenting working-all-hours approach or his questionable willingness to accept plastic carrier bags filled with millions of pounds of cold, hard ready cash for his charities. (Look, it was a Fortnum & Mason bag. At least it wasn’t a Tesco bag for life. His Majesty has some standards.)

Rather, according to the Beast, the father-of-three intends to strike out on his own to pioneer a new way of doing things such that his children (including future King George VII) will arrive in adulthood emotionally undamaged and as actual balanced, psychologically healthy people, which would be a palace first.

(Can you think of a single other King or Queen who arrived at their coronation not in need of some extended therapy thanks to all that childhood trauma and neglect and being forced to spend their seventh birthdays watching heretics being burned at the stake?)

Prince William will have a different approach to the top job. Picture: Jane Barlow – Pool/Getty Images
Prince William will have a different approach to the top job. Picture: Jane Barlow – Pool/Getty Images
How might William perform this particular conjuring trick, you might ask? The answer: Email. And FaceTime. And making sure the Wi-Fi in Windsor is nice and sturdy.

“I think you’ll see him try and balance the demands of state with the demands of being a good family man, taking care of his sick wife and making sure his kids are doing OK,” the friend of the Waleses’ told Sykes. “I’m sure that will mean doing more stuff online. He can ‘WFH’ and do hybrid working a bit. Frankly, it has more impact because it reaches many more people.”

Which means, prepare yourself for a lot more of those pandemic-era video appearances of William’s that prominently featured the blandest backgrounds his staff could find inside the roster of vast historic homes he has to his name.

(This is not a job to be taken lightly. Remember in 2016 when William and Kate had then President Barack and Michelle Obama around to dinner and it turned out that out of the 7500 pictures in the Royal Collection, the prince and princess had chosen one called The Negro Page by 17th century Dutch painter Aelbert Cuyp for their wall? Aides reportedly only realised too late and cunningly placed a potted fern to cover up the name.)

The Obamas are here, has someone hidden the racist painting? Picture: Dominic Lipinski – WPA Pool/Getty Images
The Obamas are here, has someone hidden the racist painting? Picture: Dominic Lipinski – WPA Pool/Getty Images
This WFH, King-ternship sounds all well and good on paper but will it actually work? There is a big difference between being visible on a computer screen and actually getting on a train to Sheffield to accept limp bunches of supermarket flowers from cheering crowds in Uniqlo puffers.

My point it’s not just about the prince regularly popping up via Wi-Fi but the people feeling like they are being seen by their sovereign.

When Prince Albert died and Queen Victoria fell into a deep depression and took herself off to Scotland to mope for years, Britons were left increasingly frustrated and peeved that she had essentially skipped out on them.

There is an unspoken contract between royalty and the public and I’m not sure doing a video call here and there with a Birmingham youth group full of conveniently diverse faces actually constitutes fulfilling that.

Can you actually be King, even if it is just a “dry run”, from the comfort of One’s sofa? Surely reigning requires actually turning up.

But for now? Long may William Zoom over us.

Related Posts

Our Privacy policy

https://worldnewsdailyy.com - © 2024 News