Royal family biographer Andrew Morton deserves our deepest respect. But his claim that the pandemic has damaged the monarchy couldn’t be farther from the truth, for one simple reason: Prince William.
I understand his viewpoint that the reign of Queen Elizabeth may be coming to an end a bit sooner than many expected, but this doesn’t spell the end of the monarchy.
Far from it – I believe the opposite is true.
Speaking to The Telegraph, Andrew Morton claimed that Queen Elizabeth’s reign is “effectively over”:
The brutal truth is that her reign is effectively over. [The pandemic] has done more damage to the monarchy than Oliver Cromwell. [It] has practically put Charles on the throne. It’s terribly sad, but I can’t see how the Queen can resume her job. The… virus isn’t going away soon and will be with us for months if not years.
That may be so, but it’s quite the leap to say this has “done more damage to the monarchy than Oliver Cromwell.” In fact, I’m not sure the monarchy has incurred much damage at all.
The Queen isn’t going to be disappearing. She’ll still have a vital role to play, even if that role is visibly smaller than it was before the pandemic.
And in all honesty, given her age, that’s not a bad thing! Queen Elizabeth has undoubtedly earned that reduced schedule, and she can spend more time with Prince Philip as well, who just turned an incredible 99 years old this week.
This may be an unpopular opinion in some quarters, but we have to be honest. Everything eventually changes.
The monarchy is no different. The Queen has done a fantastic job – for 68 years – and she’s still very much loved by many people all over the world.
But it’s a new era, and to appeal to a younger generation, the monarchy needs someone they can identify with.
Prince Charles is next in line for the throne. I think he’ll make a terrific King, but at 71 years old, he’s just the bridge between Queen Elizabeth and the King-in-waiting, Prince William.
If we’re honest, Prince William has come into his own over the past few years, and along with his wonderful wife Duchess Kate Middleton, it looks as though the royal family is in safe hands for many years to come.
Over the past few months, we’ve been given a taste of the kind of work Prince William enjoys.
His role within the mental health community is widely recognized, but his leadership has also appeared in unexpected ways.
For example, William knows the important role that football plays in British society. It’s the number one sport in the country by a long shot, and it’s also a great avenue to grab the attention of the younger generation.
Prince William has played a significant role in negotiating a deal that will see the FA Cup final renamed the Heads Up FA Cup final.
Emirates, who sponsors the FA Cup, agreed to donate the naming rights to this season’s tournament to support mental health, and Prince William played a pivotal role in this development.
The Duke of Cambridge has always wanted to start the biggest ever conversation on mental health. Renaming the FA Cup in this way, with millions around the world watching, is our way to help stimulate this discussion.
While Prince William himself said:
We’re going to really use the final as a moment to promote good, positive mental health for everyone. It’s quite timely, bearing in mind what we’ve all been through with this pandemic. I think there’s going to be, sadly, a lot of repercussions from this in society, not just in football, in terms of people’s mental health. Hopefully, the FA Cup can be a bit of a pivot that people can rally around.
Prince William has his finger firmly on the pulse of what people are feeling and thinking today in Britain.
That’s not a slight to the Queen or Prince Charles, but the simple fact is that a younger member of the royal family is better positioned to identify with Britain’s up-and-coming generations.
So yes, the Queen’s reign may be coming to an end. But I’m sure both her and Prince William’s mother, Diana, will and would be incredibly proud of the groundwork the future King is laying.