Prince William: Expert discusses titles once Charles is King
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The Duke of Cambridge is currently second-in-line to the throne, but reports claim he is already preparing for his future role, the Prince of Wales, behind closed doors. And as Prince Charles’ eldest son, he is expected to one day ascend the throne himself. But, William has been credited as a modernising influence on the Royal Family — and he may even upend a tradition which stretches back to the 18th Century, according to royal author Tom Quinn.
Discussing his book, ‘Kensington Palace: An Intimate Memoir from Queen Mary to Meghan Markle’ on Pod Save the Queen, Mr Quinn noted William could move the main royal court from Buckingham Palace to Kensington Palace, where he is currently based.
The podcast is hosted by Ann Gripper and features Daily Mirror royal editor Russell Myers.
Ms Gripper asked the biographer if there was a chance William could stay in Kensington, as the monarch can choose where to base themselves.
He replied: “You’re absolutely right, and if they decided that the court should be at Sandringham — or even Balmoral, to perhaps make the Scots feel better about staying in the Union — there’s nothing to actually stop that happening.
“In the same way that George III simply announced that he wanted to move to Buckingham Palace, William could say, ‘Well, I don’t want to move to Buckingham Palace, I want to stay here’.
“It could happen — but the court, in the sense that it used to exist, doesn’t really exist now.
“I mean, when William and later the Georgians lived at Kensington and it was the centre court, ministers would come from Whitehall every day to discuss policy and changes to the law.
“Because the monarch has so much less to do with that now, even if William announced that the court was staying at Kensington, it wouldn’t mean that there was a court in a political sense — it would mean very little more than him still living there.”
Even so, Kensington Palace was once the main residence for the royals.
St James’s Palace was the official seat of the court, but in 1689 — under King George II’s reign — Kensington was favoured by the royals.
Buckingham Palace did not become the London residence of the monarch until Queen Victoria took to the throne in 1837.
However, Mr Quinn suggested that William was already attached to his home in Kensington.
Mr Quinn said: “The only reason that William and Catherine might move from Kensington — and I’m touching wood here as I hope it won’t happen — is if they fell out.
“Because they couldn’t both stay there, Charles and Diana couldn’t stay there once they had fallen out.”
He also revealed that there is an underground area at Kensington Palace which is being renovated into work space.
This is expected to house all the PR elements of Kate and William’s lives as they ramp up royal duties — and Mr Quinn said they could even use it as part of the Duke of Cambridge’s court when he inherited the throne.
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Their apartment will therefore be bigger while the more administrative side of their lives becomes completely separate.
Although Buckingham Palace is the official residence of the monarch, the Queen allegedly sees Windsor Castle as her main home.
This is where she chose to spend the vast majority of lockdown with Prince Philip.
William and his wife Kate, Duchess of Cambridge first moved into Kensington in 2013, before their first son Prince George was born.
Now their primary residence, Apartment 1A — which is actually a sprawling four-floor house — is where the couple chose to raise their three children.
But, they also have a home in Norfolk called Anmer Hall which is just down the road from the Queen’s Sandringham estate.
This is reportedly the couple’s favourite place out of all of their royal homes, and where the Cambridges retreated for the majority of the national lockdowns.
One of Kate’s friends told People: “It’s a normal, busy family home with kids running around and knocking things over.
“There’s no airs and graces.”
Her friends also said that Kate’s main priority was to make sure her children have “as normal an upbringing as possible”, which is likely to be easier away from London.
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