Princess Anne wades into Charles’ ‘slimmed-down monarchy’: Princess Royal says ‘doesn’t sound like a good idea’ to trim the number of working royals – as King sidelines Harry and Andrew to focus on William and his children instead
Princess Anne today warned against slimming down the British monarchy further, declaring: ‘It doesn’t sound like a good idea from where I’m standing’.
The Queen’s only daughter, 72, who has a key role in her brother Charles’ Coronation on Saturday, spoke in defence of the Royal Family in a candid interview with Canada’s CBC News.
Since 2020, Meghan and Harry have stepped down as working royals and Prince Andrew was stripped of his HRH, patronages and military affiliations by his mother. Before he became King, Charles was vocal about wanting fewer working members of the Royal Family and a cheaper, smalller, institution.
But Princess Anne has suggested that she believes the pool of working royals is already small enough, in a nod to Megxit and her brother Andrew’s fall from grace.
She said: ‘Well, I think the “slimmed down” was said in a day when there were a few more people around. It doesn’t sound like a good idea from where I’m standing, I would say. I’m not quite sure what else we can do’.
Defending the role of the monarchy in modern times, especially with a new King taking the throne, she added: ‘There will be [conversations about relevance] everywhere. It’s not a conversation that I would necessarily have. It’s perfectly true that there is a moment when you need to have that discussion but I would just underline that the monarchy provides, with the constitution, a degree of long-term stability that is actually quite hard to come by in any other way.’
Princess Anne insisted today that the monarchy is in safe hands with King Charles after sitting down for rare interview ahead of her brother’s Coronation
Britain’s King Charles III (L) and Britain’s Princess Anne, Princess Royal attend the state funeral for theie mother Britain’s Queen Elizabeth II. She says the monarchy is safe in her brother’s hands
Anne insisted today that the monarchy is in safe hands with King Charles after sitting down for rare interview ahead of her brother’s Coronation.
Speaking to Canadian television channel, CBC News, the Princess Royal acknowledged that the monarchy’s relevance would be questioned in some quarters, despite a major poll revealing rock solid support for the family.
READ MORE: Britain’s rock solid support for the Royal Family: With Charles’ Coronation just four days way, a major poll reveals there is little appetite for republicanism… but reform IS needed
And the 72-year-old claimed the British public would know what to expect from the King as he prepares to formalise his position in a much-anticipated ceremony on Saturday.
‘Well, you know what you’re getting because he’s been practising for a bit, and I don’t think he’ll change,’ she said.
‘He is committed to his own level of service, that will remain true.’
Anne was also quizzed on suggestions that the monarchy is suffering from a dip in popularity, with some questioning its relevance in 2023.
This is despite a major poll by former Conservative deputy chairman Lord Ashcroft revealing that Britain would decisively back the monarchy if a referendum were held tomorrow.
‘We don’t, in many respects, need to deal with it [a drop in people wanting the monarchy to continue], not least of all because it is the monarch that is the key to this and the constitution that underpins the monarchy,’ she said.
‘We as a family see ourselves as there to support that role.
‘What we do, we hope, contributes to the monarchy and the way in which it can convey continuity, not just of interest but service and understanding the way that people and communities want to live their lives.
‘I think so often we get the chance to see communities and the people who do things really well and are very generous with their time in a way that, if you look at the media, you tend not to get that impression.
William, Kate, Harry and Meghan meet crowds following the Queen’s death. The Sussexes show no signs of returning as working royals
Harry and Meghan’s cheerleader, Omid Scobie, praised the discussion as he posted it on social media.
He wrote: ‘A refreshingly fluff-free interview with Princess Anne by CBC’s @adriearsenault, who (amongst many questions) asked the Princess Royal about the growing decline in support for the British Monarchy and how they deal with it as a family.’
READ MORE: Support for the Sussexes slumps: Now only Prince Andrew is less popular than Harry and Meghan… and just a third believe all of their claims about the Royal family
The largest study on the royals since the Queen’s death gave the King a welcome boost in his Coronation week.
Well over half the United Kingdom would vote for a constitutional monarchy, with less than a quarter against.
In a further boon for Charles III, two thirds of the 11,450 people surveyed agreed that the Royal Family ‘might seem a strange system in this day and age, but it works’.
Roughly the same margin also backed the current system as ‘more stable’ and ‘an asset for the UK’.
Anne also reflected on the death of her mother, the Queen, in the interview.
Speaking of the days travelling the country during the mourning period, she said: ‘I think we took a lot of it in, partly because we knew the route and I did actually spot people I knew on the way.
‘It was such an impressive sight and it was more than that because it was really touching in the way that people responded and how they did things.
‘People brought their ponies and horses out, but they not only brought them out, they plaited them, they were properly dressed and well turned out.
‘They brought their tractors out, and they parked them tidily, they were all clean.
‘If you come from a rural background I was really impressed, it was just an astonishing sight.
‘But the sheer numbers of people who turned up in quite extraordinary places.
‘You’re never going to miss that and the atmosphere it created.
‘Leaving Balmoral was never easy, but then it never has been. I was just as bad when I was leaving as a child, because I didn’t like leaving, [I was happy there].’
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