Princess Anne set to be ‘essential part’ of Firm despite Charles’s royal crackdown rumours

Lorraine says Princess Anne is her 'favourite royal'

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Princess Anne has become one of the pivotal members of the Firm during the record-breaking reign of Queen Elizabeth II. And she will likely continue to be a key figure when Prince Charles is crowned King, according to royal commentator Ian Lloyd.

The author of The Duke: A Life in 100 Chapters told “She has a good relationship with Charles.”

He continued: “The Prince of Wales is close with Anne. In the next reign, I think, she will be an essential part of the Royal Family.”

The royal expert went on discussing Prince Charles’s rumoured plans to slim down the Royal Family.

Mr Lloyd said: “Charles’s aim is to have, in a few years time, just his son William, Kate and his three grandchildren.

“And then I suspect people like Princess Anne and Edward and Sophie.”

Rumours over Prince Charles’s plans for the Firm when he becomes King have been swirling around for more than a decade.

The rumoured shape of the future Royal Family was first seen as the Diamond Jubilee in 2012 was coming to an end.

At the time, only the royals closer to the throne – Prince Charles and Prince William with their consorts and Prince Harry – had joined the Queen on the balcony of Buckingham Palace.

Given the departure as senior royals of the Duke and Duchess of Sussex, Prince Harry would no longer be considered by Charles if these streamlining plans were to become a reality.

Slashing the number of members of the Royal Family who undertake official duties would cut the Firm’s costs as it would reduce the number of people who are funded by the Sovereign Grant.

A reduced number of senior royals could also help modernise the Firm and make it more agile in its PR strategy.

Another European monarch recently made the decision to strip many of his family members of their HRH titles.

Sweden’s King Carl XVI Gustaf announced in October 2019 his decision to remove from the Royal House all his grandchildren with the exception of those born from the future Queen, Crown Princess Victoria.

An official statement issued at the time read: “His Majesty The King has decided on changes to The Royal House.

“The purpose of these changes is to establish which members of The Royal Family may be expected to perform official duties incumbent on the Head of State or related to the function of the Head of State.”

Considerations about Princess Anne’s future within the Firm come as the Queen’s only daughter confirmed to be one of the hardest-working members of her family.

Despite 2021 being marred by months of lockdowns, the grief for the loss of Prince Philip and concerns over the Queen’s health, Anne managed to complete 387 official engagements over 12 months.

She was closely followed by her brother Charles, with 385 royal duties under his belt.

Prince William came in third with 235 official duties.

He was followed by his uncle Prince Edward with 204 and aunt Sophie, Countess of Wessex, with 194.

Over the past years, and in particular as Prince Philip and the Queen started to slow down due to their age, Anne consistently carried out hundreds of engagements, showing a commitment not just to her role and the Crown but also to her several patronages and organisations.

Princess Anne currently stands 17th in the line of succession to the throne.

Upon the birth of his children – Peter and Zara – the royal decided against the Queen bestowing them with royal titles, which allowed them to choose their own careers and build lives far from the spotlight. 

Ian Lloyd The Duke: A Life in 100 Chapters, the History Press, is now available in paperback.

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