Kate and Prince William’s royal protocol breach ‘signalled their ability to lead’

Royal Family 'star appeal' at Bond premiere discussed by expert

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Kate, Duchess of Cambridge, 39, and Prince William, 39, are among the UK’s most high-profile couples and are the future heads of Britain’s Royal Family. They shocked some royal watchers by breaking with tradition and holding hands during a recent red carpet outing. While some deemed the affectionate gesture a breach of protocol it was considered a sign of their ability to lead by one royal historian who praised the Cambridges for it.

Last month Prince William and his wife Kate, Duchess of Cambridge stepped out on the red carpet for the premiere of the latest highly-anticipated instalment in the James Bond franchise – No Time to Die.

The couple were joined by two other members of the Royal Family, Prince Charles and Camilla, Duchess of Cornwall for the premiere, based at London’s Royal Albert Hall which marked the first occasion the four had been seen together since the G7 summit in Cornwall in June.

While frequenting the red carpet, the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge – who have been married for a decade – were witnessed holding hands, a signal of the pair’s loving relationship according to an expert.

Laura E Mayhall, associate professor of modern British history at The Catholic University of America has argued that by showing affection Kate and William signalled their ability to lead.

She states the action showed clear affection between the couple, something which she claims wasn’t evident when Donald and Melania Trump attempted the same action, and thus symbolises something about their ability to lead.

She told Express.co.uk: “Kate and William holding hands in public as a sign of affection marks a striking contrast with the multiple public occasions on which Donald Trump attempted to hold Melania’s hand, only to have it slapped away.

“That was widely viewed in the US as a sign of a dysfunctional marriage, again with implications for the state of the nation.”

She refers to instances where many voiced concerns of the then First Lady and her husband’s relationship following instances where Melania was seen smiling as her husband gazes upon her, and then following him turning away, her grin turns into a frown.

She claims that the actions of the couple show their capability to rule as loving partners, something which contrasts with the actions of former US President Donald Trump and his wife.

Ms Mayhall explained: “The brilliance of the British system is that the parts of government characterized by Walter Bagehot in the 19th century as “dignified” (royal and ceremonial) are separate from the parts of government he characterized as “efficient” (parliament, civil service).

“In the American case, the dignified and efficient bits are combined in one executive, the president, which puts pressure on one individual to both do the work of government and contain the aspirations of the public.

“Donald Trump’s marriage was seen by many in the States as evidence of his unfitness to rule (of course, they were also inexplicably overlooked by wide swathes of the population).

“When Melania swatted away Donald’s hand, she was saying to the world that theirs was not a happy marriage, and hence the hashtag on Twitter: #freeMelania.”

She went on to add that royals play a longer-serving role in the country, compared to politicians in America and within the UK, and that having Kate and William’s “relatable” relationship at the helm is no bad feat considering “the monarchy represents something more eternal – the monarch is the head of the church, for example – and more essential to the identity of the nation.

“Prime ministers come and go; monarchs die in office.”

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