In this tumultuous time, the Princess Royal and the Countess of Wessex were stars


Well, Prince Harry. If you’re angrily quitting your job and selling the company’s secrets, don’t expect to keep the company car and your salary, or get upset that you don’t get an invitation to the Christmas party. Every normal person knows that. Not to the Duke of Sussex, who caused his grandmother a lot of stress in the last years of her life with repulsive and hurtful allegations against her family (“memories may vary”). Fortunately, Her Majesty’s death gave the prince the ideal opportunity to reflect on the unkind behavior of himself and his wife and to offer his father and brother a full apology.

Just kidding! The Sussexes will soon be back in California where Harry can write an additional bonus chapter in his grief memoir. Which explains why none of his grieving relatives were keen to speak to him. He seemed surprised.

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And finally to Princess Anne. Underestimated for far too long, the Princess Royal was a star in these turbulent times. There is no clearer example of the difficult dual role she must play than the low curtsey she made to her mother’s coffin when it arrived in Holyrood. It was a gesture, beautiful and devastating, personal and formal. The loss of her parents, the duty to her sovereign; Somehow these feelings have to be reconciled. Likewise the salute to her brother, now the King, as she set out to travel to Windsor with her mother’s coffin. It brought many to tears, an emotional release the 72-year-old royal has denied herself as she walked every (certainly tiring) step of the way with the late Queen.

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“I was fortunate to share the last 24 hours of my dearest mother’s life. It was an honor and a privilege to accompany her on her final journey,” she said in a statement, accompanied by the cutest picture of them together. Anne has the bravery of her parents, “just gotta keep going”. You would be so proud of her. Only recently I noticed that the Princess Royal also has the beautiful voice of her mother. I hope the new monarch takes heed. King Charles was to promote his sister to Council of State, meaning she could deputize for him on official duties when he was abroad or unable to work.

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Absurdly – make that obscene – Prince Harry, Prince Andrew and his older daughter Beatrice are all Councilors of State. As a woman, Anne receives no inheritance rights, and pushes the Queen’s third-born child (and his descendants) before her. Let’s face it, the combined wisdom of Princes Harry and Andrew would fit on a golf tee. Beatrice is half her aunt’s age and far less experienced. We should hope that one of the first acts of the new king’s rule will be to overturn this shamefully sexist and antiquated rule. It offends the Queen’s second-born, a respected official. The Princess Royal is one hell of a woman, title or not.



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