Charles WON’T drop his pet projects when he’s crowned King: Prince of Wales ‘will resist calls to abandon his charitable causes and is set to throw open Royal palaces’ during his reign
The Prince of Wales will resist calls to abandon his pet projects when he becomes King, The Mail on Sunday understands.
Instead he will find new ways to champion favourite causes, throwing open Royal palaces and ‘bringing people together to find solutions’.
One insider described it as a plan to be ‘a convenor King rather than a campaigner King’. Significantly, it appears he has agreed not to be outspoken or to court controversy.
It is said the Prince summed up his new approach during a meeting in the Canadian capital of Ottawa on Wednesday with Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and Mark Carney, the former governor of the Bank of England. ‘Even if people just turn up to see what it’s like inside my house, they may then stay to solve the problems that we face,’ he told them.
Prince Charles and Camilla sign the Veteran Affairs Canada visitor’s book on May 18
Charles has been criticised for his strong views on subjects such as architecture, homeopathy, organic food and traditional farming methods, and some have questioned how his opinions will fit with the impartiality required of the monarch.
It seems, however, that his future interventions will have a focus on ‘listening rather than speaking’.
A Royal source said: ‘He never gives up on issues and keeps going back to people to find out what progress has been made.
A Royal source told The Mail on Sunday: ‘He never gives up on issues and keeps going back’
Charles is likely to have a very different style of monarchy to the Queen’s, experts anticipate
‘But this is the distinction: not solving problems himself but listening to people’s concerns and bringing others together to solve them.’
That is likely to lead to a different style of monarchy from the Queen’s – a record-breaking reign in which few people have ever heard her personal views.
It also marks a departure for Charles, who has earned both admiration and criticism for interventions such as describing a proposed extension to the National Gallery as ‘a monstrous carbuncle’.
He will, however, maintain the networks of friendship he has built up. The source continued: ‘The Prince has relationships that go back a long way – some of the indigenous leaders he met in Canada are people he’s been speaking to for decades. His mother was much younger when she came to the Throne, but he has had a lifetime as a Royal.’
Charles met Canadian prime minister Justin Trudeau in Ottowa during a short visit this week
Another insider said: ‘We know what the Prince thinks about various subjects, so there’s no possibility of putting the genie back in the bottle. What he chooses to say will be very important, yet he can still be bold enough to make an impact but do it very skilfully.’
Last week’s three-day Canadian tour provided the biggest sign yet of how he would perform his duties. It was notable, for instance, that he used a flight to Yellowknife in the Northwest Territories to make changes to a farewell speech so as to acknowledge the suffering of indigenous children in Anglican Residential Schools. Aides revealed that what had been planned as ‘a few remarks’ was transformed into a strongly worded statement.
Charles had earlier met survivors as Canada nears the first anniversary of the discovery of hundreds of unmarked children’s graves.
A keen ecologist, Charles has outspoken views on architecture, farming, homeopathy and more
His approach was welcomed, with one leader telling him: ‘You must have been indigenous in another life because you understand us.’
The Prince also privately presented chiefs from the Dettah community with two bird boxes, handmade at his Highgrove estate, so they can track native wildlife.
A source said that the Prince, who has found common ground with the Elders on their passion for the environment, has arranged to follow up with the community to see if the boxes work.
It is thought that much of this soft diplomacy will continue when he becomes King – behind the scenes and away from the cameras.
Short and sweet tour that’s laid the blueprint for those to come
By Kate Mansey for the Mail On Sunday
Royal aides were keeping a keen eye on the weather forecast as they put the finishing touches to plans for last week’s tour of Canada.
And as winds picked up in Newfoundland, local organisers decided to move the official welcome ceremony indoors.
There was, however, a much more dangerous storm brewing.
Canada has been in a state of near national mourning after the unmarked graves of hundreds of indigenous children were discovered – an appalling legacy of abuse from Residential Schools run by the Anglican Church.
There were calls for the Queen, as head of the Church, to apologise. But the job fell to the Archbishop of Canterbury.
After the recent Royal tour of the Caribbean, where the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge were accused of being colonial and tone-deaf, there was much riding on this high-profile visit by the Prince of Wales and the Duchess of Cornwall. And following months of debate across the Commonwealth as to whether the Crown should still represent people living thousands of miles from Britain, it was a chance to take stock and deliver a new message: ‘We’re listening.’
Even before take-off in a Royal Canadian Air Force jet from Brize Norton, Charles telephoned indigenous leaders, some of whom he has known for more than 40 years. It proved that being the heir to the throne for so long has its advantages after all.
One Elder of the Cree tribe knows him not as Charles, but by his spirit name which means: ‘Sun watches over him in a good way.’
Landing in Newfoundland on Tuesday, there seemed to be something in it. Despite the forecast, the wind had died down, the clouds cleared and the sun was shining.
At the end of the week, Charles gave a heartfelt speech – in yet more brilliant sunshine – in which he acknowledged the pain caused by Residential Schools, something for which indigenous Elders had been urging and which had been deftly inserted into the script.
Dignified and tactful, the short but sweet visit laid down a blueprint for Royal tours to come.