by Graham Pierrepoint
The British monarchy may not have all the power and the ability to make and change the law quite as much as they used to, but they’re still an important part of British culture – they’re still highly followed in the media and by people all over the world – meaning that if the British royals were to give up the crown tomorrow, chances are there would be more than a few people disappointed. It’s also a role that you are born into and which still comes with a fairly high-pressure task – to represent an entire country no matter where you go. Queen Elizabeth II remains steadfast in her role as monarch at the age of 91, while son Prince Charles, the Prince of Wales, remains next in line to the throne. Beyond this, his son Prince William – the Duke of Cambridge – awaits the throne, with his son Prince George beyond him – meaning that there is no shortage of people ready to take up the mantle.
Prince Harry may not be directly in line for the throne, but, as William’s younger brother – and as the son of Charles and the late Princess Diana – he has been in the public eye from the minute he was born. Now, at the age of 32, he looks to the future keenly with the mantra of ‘making the most of it’ – he advised in interview with Newsweek magazine. Harry also made the surprising revelation that the role of monarch may not be as necessarily sought-after as everyone assumes. “Is there any one of the royal family who wants to be King or Queen? I don’t think so,” the Prince advises, “But we will carry out our duties at the right time.” The revealing interview also showed a side to Harry who wants to be able to do good for society while ‘people are interested in (him)’ before Prince George and sister Princess Charlotte take center stage.
Great Britain remains under parliamentary control – but, as this week’s important Queen’s Speech showed, there is still reliance upon the monarch to give assent to the forming of a government, and for any proposals that may shape the way in which her country is run. There may be two sides to the argument over whether or not the British monarchy should remain – but for the time being, at least, there is too much interest in their public work and the role they play to suggest their abdication just yet.