Royal Family news: Palace popularity reshuffle as Queen hit by blow – and Meghan relegated | Royal | News

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Queen ‘cool and calm head in a crisis’ says expert

The Queen has dominated the popularity charts, run by pollsters YouGov, for months. But surveys carried out between October and December 2020 have seen Her Majesty be overtaken by her grandson and heir, marking a rare loss for the Queen.

Out of the 1424 British adults polled on their opinion of the Queen, 73 percent said they had a positive opinion of the monarch.

While 16 percent said they had a neutral opinion of the Queen, only 11 percent said they held her under a negative light.

Despite this positive score, Prince William still performed better than the Queen, with 75 percent of the 1486 people polled on their opinion of him giving him a positive score – and placing him at the top of the charts.

The Queen is still hugely popular across all ages, a rundown of the YouGov data shows, but she is particularly liked by people born between 1965 and 1980 – Generation X. 

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Royal Family news: The Queen’s popularity among Britons has dropped, a poll shows (Image: GETTY)

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Royal Family news: Kate and Prince William during a video call to NHS staff in Scotland (Image: GETTY/KENSINGTON ROYAL)

77 percent of the people in this age bracket said they have a positive opinion of the Queen, followed by Boomers – people born before 1964 – with 73 percent.

Millennials, people born between 1981 and 1996, greatly appreciate the Queen, with 66 percent saying they have a positive opinion of her – but she is only their third favourite member of the Royal Family.

Millennials, YouGov has discovered, prefer Prince William to the Queen, with 73 percent saying they have a positive opinion of him.

The same answer has been given by 75 percent of the member of the Generation X polled and 78 percent of the Baby Boomers.  

READ MORE: Prince Harry spotted filming with pal James Corden in Hollywood

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Royal Family news: The Queen with Kate and William in December (Image: GETTY)

Just 10 percent of those polled said they have a negative opinion of the Duke and 14 have a neutral one.

YouGov regularly checks the mood of the country on 15 members of the Royal Family – including the Wessexes, the Cambridges and Princess Anne.

The latest results shared by the research data and analyst group show a huge reshuffle in the top 15 most popular royal charts.

Both Sophie, Countess of Wessex, and Camilla, Duchess of Cornwall, have surpassed Meghan Markle in the charts, who now ranks 11th.  

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Royal Family news: 73 percent of the people polled have a positive opinion of the Queen (Image: GETTY)

Among the 1,515 British adults interviewed on Meghan, 32 percent have a positive opinion of the Duchess while 25 percent have a neutral one.

But a staggering 40 percent said to hold a negative opinion on the Duchess of Sussex.

Prince Harry’s popularity also appears to have dropped as he now ranks 8th, with 41 percent of the people saying they have a positive opinion of him – closely followed by Camilla, with 37 percent of positive opinions on her side.

Princess Anne, the no-nonsense Princess Royal, has now joined the Queen, William and Kate, Duchess of Cambridge, at the top of the charts, ranking 4th with 50 percent of the interviewees saying they have a positive opinion of her.

This is a live blog. Follow below for rolling updates on the Royal Family.  

04.54am update: Princess Anne gives rare glimpse into her home and sentimental photographs of Zara

PRINCESS Anne shared a photo of her Gatcombe Park home on social media on Saturday.

The Princess Royal was snapped sitting in her living room watching the rugby game between England and Scotland.

She was joined by her husband Sir Timothy Laurence, as they cheered on the Scots to a memorable 6-11 victory over the old enemy.

Princess Anne is the patron of Scottish rugby and often in the past has attended games in person.

3.46am update:  Prince Charles left ‘a little saddened’ by William and Kate’s countryside choice

PRINCE Charles was left “a little saddened” by William and Kate’s choice of countryside residence, according to a Royal expert.

The Duke and Duchess of Cornwall are understood to be very close to their adorable grandchildren – Prince George, Princess Charlotte and Prince Louis.

By all accounts they were very much hoping that the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge would choose a country house close to their Highgrove home in Gloucestershire.

However, William and Kate had other plans for themselves and their children.

01.46am update:  Princess Diana believed Camilla saw her as a ‘threat’ at first meeting – ‘We had lunch’

PRINCESS Diana believed Camilla Parker-Bowles saw her as a “threat” from their first meeting.

Journalist Andrew Morton claims Diana confided in him about her relationship with the Duchess of Cornwall in 1991. At the time, Mr Morton was preparing to write his book Diana: Her True Story’, which was revised in 2017. Diana was 19 when she got engaged to Prince Charles in 1981.

Camilla was 33 and married to Andrew-Parker Bowles. Charles was 32.

In the revised version, Mr Morton quotes Diana as telling him that Camilla saw her as a “threat” from the very start of their acquaintance.

She recalled an awkward lunch with Camilla after news of her engagement to the Prince of Wales was announced.

12.42am update: Meghan Markle’s ‘unbelievable deal or no deal’ ultimatum to Queen unveiled

MEGHAN MARKLE gave the Queen an “unbelievable deal or no deal” scenario before leaving the UK for North America, a royal author claimed.

The “Megxit” saga was reignited this month when Meghan described Buckingham Palace as having “dictated” the details of her and Prince Harry’s first son’s birth certificate. The former Hollywood actress said the Palace had forced her to remove her given first name “Rachel Meghan” a month after Archie was born, in June 2019. According to reports, Meghan was offended by the institution’s assumption that she wanted to be “nameless” on her own child’s birth certificate.

11.27pm update:  Prince William sent warning over ‘crossing the line’ as royal fans hit back at campaign

PRINCE WILLIAM has been warned he risks alienating older royal fans by constantly focusing on the youth with his climate change appeals.

Prince William took part in a video chat with seven young people named in the 2020’s Young Champions of the Earth by the UN Environment Programme (UNEP). The Duke of Cambridge, who last year launched a decade-long project to change the tide of the climate crisis, listened to the young activists as they outlined projects they have been working on.

During the call, he praised the activists for their passion and awareness of the threat climate change poses.

And he urged young people to educate their families to change habits and lifestyles and have a positive impact on the planet.

However, Prince William was warned by social media not to depict older generations as unaware of the climate crisis or careless about it.

One wrote on Twitter: “Be careful here. You could cross a line.

“I’ve been involved in environmental work since the ’70s.

“There’s plenty of us around, William. You ain’t the first generation to discover a need.

“Before you tell a younger generation to talk to an older one why don’t you talk to big business”.

10.55pm update: Princess Anne: Eagle-eyed royal fans gush over royal’s book collection – ‘Love it’

Royal fans keenly admired Anne, Princess Royal’s book collection after she shared a rare photo to celebrate Scotland’s historic Six Nations victory over England.

The Queen’s daughter is the patron of Scottish Rugby and is a keen supporter of the team.

As coronavirus restrictions mean she couldn’t attend the match in person she watched on TV, along with her husband Sir Timothy Laurence, from their Gatcombe Park home in south-west England.

The photo shows Princess Anne and her husband watching the match from a sofa.

A coffee table, holding a number of books, is immediately in front of the couple with a dog bed by the TV.

One Twitter user commented: “Love the bird book there on the table.”

On Instagram another added “I love all the books stacked up” and accompanied this with heart and book emojis.

8.55pm update: ‘Not needed or wanted’ Meghan and Harry should lose titles over political meddling – poll

Meghan Markle and Prince Harry should lose their Sussex titles because of their meddling in US politics, according to a new poll.

The Duke and Duchess of Sussex sparked more controversy after a leaked memo indicated they had broken royal protocol by meeting with a top Democrat in the run-up to the US election.

An exclusive Express.co.uk poll found a staggering 97 percent (7,306 people) thought Meghan and Harry should lose their Sussex titles over political meddling.

Just three per cent (246 people) thought the pair should be allowed to keep their titles despite their latest move into the political arena.

A total of 7,583 people took part in the online poll which ran between 2pm and 8pm on Sunday February 7 2021.

Military

Royal news: The military history of the royals (Image: Express)

8.12pm update: Kate struggling to match Meghan Markle’s ‘unattainable’ talent – ‘She’s not that great!’

Kate, Duchess of Cambridge, is nowhere near the skill level that her sister-in-law, Meghan, Duchess of Sussex, has in one unexpected area, royal commentators have discovered.

Kate, Duchess of Cambridge’s handwriting has been compared to Meghan Markle’s in an interesting contrast.

The royal had been addressing the challenges of the national lockdown in a Zoom call with parents and a headteacher from a London school.

During the virtual talk, Kate showed off her writing in a little game, which Royally Obsessed podcast hosts Roberta Fiorito and Rachel Bowie made sure to dissect.

Ms Fiorito told listeners: “They asked who had been the greatest support during the pandemic, and Kate wrote, in distinct handwriting, ‘William’.

“I actually liked that her script wasn’t that perfect. It was so swoopy, and still felt very elegant to me.

“I always think about Meghan and her calligraphy.”

6.56pm update: Meghan and Harry may ‘beat’ royals to form ‘close’ bond with Biden using Duke’s advantage

Meghan, the Duchess of Sussex, and Prince Harry might already have “their own relationship” with new US President Joe Biden ahead of the rest of the Royal Family.

Meghan, the Duchess of Sussex, and Prince Harry could “beat” the Royal Family to creating a relationship with Joe Biden, commentators have claimed.

The couple are not only already in the same country as the new US President, but also have an advantage due to the Duke of Sussex’s connections.

HeirPod host Omid Scobie and ABC News foreign correspondent Maggie Rulli discussed what this could mean.

Queen

Royal news: The Queen is set to hold talks with Harry (Image: PA)

5.55pm update: Queen ‘lobbied for law change to hide royal wealth’ – 1970s letters exposed

The Queen lobbied ministers to change a law in order to shield details of her personal wealth from the public, it has been claimed.

According to documents from the National Archives, the Queen’s own private lawyer, Matthew Farrer, pressured the Government to make a change to an upcoming piece of legislation.

Using a parliamentary procedure called the Queen’s consent, it is claimed Her Majesty stopped the publication of her true wealth after ministers included a clause in the Companies Bill, The Guardian newspaper claims in a new report.

The Queen’s consent must be sought before any legislation is brought before Parliament when it relates to private interests of the Crown or may impact the royal prerogative.

4.21pm update: Prince Harry suffered ‘bigger omission’ on Archie birth certificate than Meghan Markle

Prince Harry’s name change on his son Archie’s birth certificate has been dubbed a “bigger deal” than Meghan Markle’s as royal commentators were left questioning the move.

Prince Harry’s royal title was initially left off his son Archie’s birth certificate in a “bigger omission” than Meghan Markle’s name change, according to royal commentators.

This discovery comes after The Sun sparked a row over why the Duchess of Sussex had her name changed on the birth certificate.

Royally Obsessed podcast hosts Roberta Fiorito and Rachel Bowie noted that the Duke appeared to have been subject to a change that was a much “bigger deal”.

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Royal news: Prince harry suffered “bigger omission” over birth certificate change (Image: PA)

3.16pm update: Prince William: Calls on young to teach eco agenda

The Duke of Cambridge has suggested that young people could make a difference to climate change by teaching their families about the effects they were having on the environment.

Prince William, who was talking to seven young people named by the UN as 2020’s Young Champions of the Earth, said the pandemic had helped people “work out what’s really important to us”.

Speaking from Sandringham, he said: “If every young person educates their family on the environmental impact they are having, that in turn is making a difference and changing the tide and creating that momentum.”

The Duke, 38, talked of the need to remain positive, which, he explained, was the thinking behind his Earthshot Prize, a global award supported by the United Nations Environmental Programme designed to create significant change over the next 10 years.

The environmentalists were each recognised for efforts to create a positive impact in their communities.

Additional reporting by Alice Scarsi. 

Queen: Royal expert discusses plans for Joe Biden meeting

2.30pm update: Princess Eugenie may honour grandad Prince Philip with rarely used royal baby name tribute

Princess Eugenie could honour her grandfather, Prince Philip, through the choice of name for her first child, which is due to arrive “imminently”, royal commentators have stated.

Princess Eugenie’s baby could be named in honour of Prince Philip’s Greek family, according to Ladbrokes.

The UK betting company released updates on the name of Prince Andrew and Sarah Ferguson’s first grandchild.

ITV Royal Rota podcast hosts Chris Ship and Lizzie Robinson discussed the possibility.

Mr Ship told listeners: “Currently the leading girls name is Elizabeth.

“The odds for that being the name of the newest royal baby have been slashed by Ladbrokes.

“Princess Eugenie and Jack Brooksbank’s impending arrival is imminent, perhaps even days away.

“Bookies can reveal that the name Elizabeth has seen its odds slashed from 6/1 in the last week.”

He continued: “It shares favouritism with Arthur as the boy name.

“Grace is also popular, followed by Victoria, James, Arabella and Alice.

“Alice obviously is the name of the mother of Prince Philip, Princess Alice of Battenberg.

“It was also one of the daughters of Victoria and Albert.”

Ms Robinson added: “She was the third child and second daughter, I believe.

“We don’t have any Alices in the younger generation at the moment.

“There’s also a Frederick, a Florence, an Albert and an Edward.”

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Royal Family news: Prince Harry was spotted with James Corden in Los Angeles (Image: GETTY)

1pm update: Prince Harry mocked after being spotted preparing LA project – ‘Just another celebrity!’

Prince Harry has been accused of becoming “just another celebrity” after he reportedly took part in a popular skit with his pal James Corden.

Prince Harry was photographed on an open-air double-decker tour bus in Hollywood with a filming crew and Mr Corden, a long-time friend of the Duke of Sussex and host of The Late Late Show.

According to a source, Harry and Mr Corden recorded the popular and recurring segment of the TV host’s show – Carpool Karaoke.

Some royal watchers and commentators described this move as a fall from Harry’s status of prince of the United Kingdom to celebrity.

talkRADIO host Dan Wootton wrote on Twitter: “Wow, this is what Prince Harry has become after less than a year in Hollywood.

“Just another celebrity plugging his latest product on a chat show. Sad!”

Royal author Robert Jobson replied to Mr Wootton saying: “Sad, really.

“He had a fantastic (not for profit) platform to make a real change when he was simply a Prince of the realm. Clearly it wasn’t enough.”

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Royal Family news: Meghan and Harry are to become TV producers for Netflix (Image: GETTY)

12pm update: Meghan and Harry avoiding ‘controversial’ topics so Netflix plans not ‘vetoed’ by Palace 

Meghan and Prince Harry’s future plans for their commercial deals such as Netflix will not be “kiss and tells” as the couple seek to avoid the fury of the Palace. 

Meghan Markle and Prince Harry’s future work will not be “vetoed” by the Royal Family, according to a royal commentator.

Richard Fitzwilliams spoke to Express.co.uk about the Duke and Duchess of Sussex’s relationship with the Palace going forward.

He stressed that there would be an effort to avoid anything that could prove to be “controversial” in their Netflix and Spotify deals. 

Mr Fitzwilliams told Express.co.uk: “I think the emphasis will be on their good sense and their judgement.

“I don’t think that there’s anything that they would want to do that would be vetoed.

“As far as I know, they certainly don’t intend to do anything controversial.

“Although we don’t know, you see, there are question marks over this.” 

He continued: “We don’t know precisely what they’ll be doing.

“We know there’ll be documentaries and children’s programmes.

“There’ll be programmed that will be made on topics they are committed to.

“That’ll be things like diversity, gender equality, environmental issues, issues dealing with mental health etc.” 

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Royal Family news: Princess Anne offered a glimpse of her living room in a picture shared on Twitter (Image: ROYAL FAMILY/TWITTER)

10.40am update: Princess Anne delights fans by posting rare photo of living room – unique royal insight 

Princess Anne has offered a rare and extraordinary insight into her private life as she celebrated one of her patronages.

Princess Anne famously values her privacy and is rarely under the spotlight, carrying out much of her royal work behind the scenes and without media presence.

However, she recently invited royal fans into her home to celebrate with her and her husband Sir Timothy Laurence the momentous victory of Scotland at the 150th Calcutta Cup. 

After Scotland snatched the cup for the first time in 38 years by winning against the English rugby team yesterday, the Royal Family Twitter account shared a celebratory message on behalf of Princess Anne.

The tweet read: “As @Scotlandteam’s Patron, The Princess Royal often supports the team from the stands.

“HRH and Vice Admiral Sir Tim cheered Scotland on from home today as they played England for the Calcutta Cup, 150 years since their first match.

“Well played, Scotland!”

The tweet included a picture of the Princess Royal sitting next to her husband on a couch in her living room.

The couple smiled as they looked at the TV in the cosy room filled with books, statuettes of dogs and horses and paintings.

Royal fans were ecstatic to see the Princess Royal allowing people to take a peep into her home.

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Royal Family news: The Cambridges clapping for frontline workers (Image: GETTY)

9.40 am update: Princess Anne described encounter with gun-wielding attempted kidnapper – ‘I lost my rag’

Princess Anne described losing her temper as a gun-wielding man attempted to kidnap her in 1974.

Ian Ball blocked the princess’s car on The Mall outside Buckingham Palace in central London and wounded four people with gunshots.

The Queen’s only daughter and her then-husband, Captain Mark Phillips, were en route to the Palace when a car swerved in front of their chauffeur-driven limousine.

The Princess, then 23, had just attended a charity event in Pall Mall when Ball, 26, brought them to a halt with his Ford Escort.

As royal police protection officer James Beaton and driver Alex Callender got out of the limousine, Ball began to shoot.

Mr Beaton’s own weapon jammed and he was shot three times by the assailant.

Anne refused to get out of the car – despite witnessing the shootings.

Ball tried to pull her from her seat causing a tear to her dress.

The princess told talk show host Michael Parkinson: “I lost my rag at that stage.

“He started pulling my arm and Mark was holding onto me and we maintained the status quo for quite a bit, because I wasn’t going anywhere, put it that way.”

8.40am update: Kate Middleton is ‘less formal’ and more ‘expressive’ when without Prince William

Kate is different when she carries out royal engagements by herself, according to speech expert and voiceover artist John Briggs.

Speaking to Express.co.uk, the expert suggested the Duchess is “less formal” when attending engagements alone.

He stated: “From what I have seen, Kate is less formal when she is on her own.

“As a consort to William she is used to putting him first – but actually she uses more empathy and prosody (light and shade) in her voice than William does.”

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Royal Family news: Meghan and Harry are said to have taken part in a meeting with the Governor of California (Image: GETTY)

8am update: Meghan Markle and Harry break major royal protocol with politician meeting – leaked memo

Meghan Markle and Prince Harry are said to have taken part in an “introductory meeting” with a top Democrat in the run-up to the US election in November last year.

Meghan and Harry attended a meeting via video link with California’s Governor Gavin Newsom, it has been claimed.

A memo seen by The Sun says the Duke and Duchess of Sussex had been pencilled in for a one-hour-long video conference call with Mr Newsom, once tipped to be a White House frontrunner, on October 19 last year.

The memo describes the meeting as “introductory”.

Mr Newson’s office did not disclose what was discussed during the chat.

A spokesperson for the Governor told The Sun: “We do not comment on the content of meetings between the Governor and private parties or his staff.”

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Royal Family news: Prince Charles is the heir apparent to the throne (Image: GETTY)

7.05am update: Prince William and Kate broke long-standing royal travel rule after Prince George’s birth

Prince William and Kate, Duchess of Cambridge, often break the mould by opting to stray away from some of the Royal Family’s traditional rules.

Prince William and his wife Kate, the Duchess of Cambridge, will one day be the King and Queen consort of the United Kingdom, and as such must follow a number of Royal Family traditions and protocols.

One such rule break happened just months after their first son Prince George, seven, was born.

Both Prince William and Kate are world travellers, jetting off to represent the UK during global appearances, as well as for their own leisure time.

Before they had children, the duo did not need to worry about any rules pertaining to travelling with offspring.

However, just eight months after Prince George’s birth, the couple to embark on an official tour of New Zealand and Australia.

According to royal tradition, two heirs to the throne can not fly together, and as a result, Prince William would be expected to board a flight alone.

Under the rule, Kate could fly with the young Prince George but would have to do so separately from her husband.

The tradition is thought to date back to the early days of air travel when accidents and fatalities were much more common.

Despite this, the royal couple made the decision to fly as a family unit on their tour of Australia. 

6.13am update: Prince Charles urges change to ‘unhelpful’ environmental language such as ‘biodiversity’

PRINCE CHARLES has been critical of language used to discuss environmental issues, describing it as “unhelpful”.

The 72-year-old called on the industry to show “a willingness to do things differently”.

He cited terms such as biodiversity and agroforestry, often used by scientists and NGOs, suggesting they failed to communicate practical messages, The Sunday Telegraph revealed. 

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Royal Family news: Prince William has made an appeal to young people (Image: GETTY)

5.09am update:  Prince William calls on the young to educate elders about climate crisis – ‘Change the tide’

PRINCE William called on young people to help “change the tide” of global warming by educating their relatives about the impact their lives have on the environment.

The Duke of Cambridge was addressing a group of seven young people named 2020 Young Champions of the Earth by the UN Environment Programme (UNEP) in a video call on Wednesday.

He said: “If every young person educates their family on the environmental impact they are having, that in turn is making a difference and changing the tide and creating that momentum.”

4.05am update: Princess Diana believed Camilla saw her as a ‘threat’ at first meeting – ‘We had lunch’

PRINCESS Diana believed Camilla Parker-Bowles saw her as a “threat” from their first meeting.

Journalist Andrew Morton claims Diana confided in him about her relationship with the Duchess of Cornwall in 1991. At the time, Mr Morton was preparing to write his book Diana: Her True Story’, which was revised in 2017. Diana was 19 when she got engaged to Prince Charles in 1981.

Camilla was 33 and married to Andrew-Parker Bowles. Charles was 32.

In the revised version, Mr Morton quotes Diana as telling him that Camilla saw her as a “threat” from the very start of their acquaintance.

3.05am update: Princess Beatrice’s historic royal wedding tiara caused Queen Elizabeth II ‘great stress’

Beatrice borrowed the monarch’s Queen Mary Fringe Tiara she wore during her wedding to Prince Philip in 1947 for her wedding to Edoardo Mapelli Mozzi last year.

The York royal is only the second family member to wear the Queen’s heirloom, with Princess Anne being the first.

The Queen Mary fringe was originally commissioned by Queen Mary, using diamonds gifted to her by Queen Victoria, in 1919.

E. Wolff and Co made the piece, which features diamond bars separated by smaller diamond spikes.

Queen Mary gave the piece to the Queen Mother in 1936, before it became the then-Princess Elizabeth’s to wear on her wedding day.

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Royal Family news: The line of succession to the throne (Image: EXPRESS)

1.43am update: Queen sent Beatrice ‘very clear’ message on impressive gift Princess Charlotte can ‘enjoy’

THE QUEEN gave Princess Beatrice a “very clear” message on how she wanted her huge Wendy House to be designed for future young royals to enjoy.

Her Majesty was gifted the impressive life-size playhouse when she was six years old. The giant Wendy House sits in the gardens at the Royal Lodge in Windsor, where the Queen lived as a child.

The playhouse has been kitted out with running water, electricity, a fully-functioning kitchen and bathroom and even a living room and bedroom.

The Queen and her sister Princess Margaret are said to have spent much of their childhood playing in the impressive Wendy House.

12.48am update: William hails young people as ‘shining lights’ in mission to protect environment

The Duke of Cambridge has suggested young people could be the champions of environmental change in homes across the globe, the Belfast Telegraph writes.

William’s comment came as he chatted to young activists recognised by a United Nations initiative. He highlighted how the next generation could educate their families about the “environmental impact” of their actions.

Seven young people have been named 2020 Young Champions of the Earth by the UN Environment Programme (UNEP) and William told them they could “easily be in the mix” for his Earthshot Prize.

Nzambi Matee, from Kenya, who manufactures sustainable building materials, told the duke it was hard to change the attitudes of older people, although her grandmother had adopted sustainability easily.

She laughed: “If we can convince my grandmother not to use plastic bags, we can do anything.”

The duke agreed, saying the next generation did not have to start ambitious projects like the seven recognised by the UN to “do their bit”.

He added: “If every young person educates their family on the environmental impact they are having, that in turn is making a difference, and changing the tide, and creating that momentum.”

11.50pm update: Prince Charles should not step aside for William despite ‘cliff edge’ claim – author

 THE BRITISH monarchy will thrive and flourish under King Charles, according to a leading Royal historian and writer.

The Prince of Wales is next in line to ascend to the throne, after his mother Queen Elizabeth II.

Yet there are many who believe he is not fit to be king and would destroy the monarchy.

In a recent interview with Vanity Fair, Royal biographer Clive Irving claimed that the monarchy “could go over a cliff very fast” if Charles became King.

Others argue that Charles should step aside for William, if the Royal institution is to survive into the future.

However, Alison Weir emphatically defended Charles’ right to succeed to the throne, insisting he would make an “excellent” monarch.

She told Express.co.uk: “I do think he is fit to be King. I see no reason why he shouldn’t be King.

“He has been trained to be a king and since his early 20s he’s got involved.”

The Prince of Wales will receive a lifetime achievement award later on Sunday

The Prince of Wales will receive a lifetime achievement award later on Sunday (Image: Getty)

10.31pm update: Kate Middleton row: Duchess and Meghan ‘not forged kind of friendship’ Palace hoped for

Kate Middleton and Meghan Markle “did not forge the kind of friendship” insiders at Buckingham Palace had hoped for, a royal correspondent claimed.

Since Meghan and her husband Prince Harry decided to uproot and move to the US, quitting their roles within the Royal Family, a reported row between the Duchess of Sussex and the Duchess of Cambridge has dominated the discussion.

Claims of a feud between Harry and his brother Prince William has also been speculated, particularly after the Duke of Sussex told the world he and his sibling were on “different paths” in an admission two years ago.

Harry has not seen members of the Royal Family since the departure last year, and a meeting to discuss his progress with Megxit – the term coined to describe Meghan and Harry’s exit – has been postponed.

Ashley Pearson, a royal reporter, told Amazon Prime’s 2020 documentary Harry & Meghan: The Next Step, that part of the tension was due to Kate and Meghan being unable to strike up a solid friendship.

She said: “Initially Harry and Meghan moved in together, on Kensington Palace grounds. They had a rather small cottage, I think it was just two bedrooms.

“It wasn’t grand or especially big, but it was very close to William and Kate. I think the hopes were that Kate would help Meghan adjust, and the two women would become fierce and loyal friends, and would be joined at the hip, and everything would go smoothly.”

Meghan Markle: Expert on Buckingham Palace ‘criticism’

9.21pm update: Princess Eugenie may honour grandad Prince Philip with rarely used royal baby name tribute

Princess Eugenie could honour her grandfather, Prince Philip, through the choice of name for her first child, which is due to arrive “imminently”, royal commentators have stated.

Princess Eugenie’s baby could be named in honour of Prince Philip’s Greek family, according to Ladbrokes.

The UK betting company released updates on the name of Prince Andrew and Sarah Ferguson’s first grandchild.

ITV Royal Rota podcast hosts Chris Ship and Lizzie Robinson discussed the potentials.

Mr Ship told listeners: “Currently the leading girls name is Elizabeth. The odds for that being the name of the newest royal baby have been slashed by Ladbrokes.

“Princess Eugenie and Jack Brooksbank’s impending arrival is imminent, perhaps even days away.

“Bookies can reveal that the name Elizabeth has seen its odds slashed from 6/1 in the last week.”

Engagement rings

Royal news: A list of engagement rings of the Royal Family (Image: Express)

8.09pm update: Sarah Ferguson’s heartbreaking final row with Diana ‘after she was given verrucas’

Sarah Ferguson’s heartbreaking final row with Diana revolved around verrucas, in an argument that saw the pair never speak to each other again before the Princess of Wales’ death.

The Duchess of York, affectionately known as Fergie, is the subject of tonight’s Channel 5 documentary When Fergie Met the Monarchy.

The early years of her life inside the Royal Family will be dissected, including the backlash Fergie received from the Queen and Prince Philip after the infamous ‘toe-sucking’ incident.

The 61-year-old soared in popularly after marrying the Queen’s son Prince Andrew in 1986, and alongside her sister-in-law Princess Diana, the pair sparked a new interest in the Royal Family.

She and Diana, however, endured a difficult relationship at times, and despite their closeness away from the spotlight, Fergie was heartbreakingly not on speaking terms with Diana before she died in 1997.

A 2019 documentary, The Royal Family at War, detailed what happened in the fallout, and how they remained friends despite both separating from their husbands in 1992, and divorcing them in 1996.

6.48pm update: Kate’s ‘unexpected’ new look in recent appearance ‘excites’ royal fans – ‘Is that Kate?’

Kate, the Duchess of Cambridge, has made royal commentators double-take after she had a massive departure from her usual appearance while speaking about a topic close to her heart.

Kate had a “new look” when Kensington Palace released footage of her.

The royal had been highlighting the start of Children’s Mental Health Week with a selfie video.

HeirPod host Omid Scobie and ABC News Foreign Correspondent Maggie Rulli discussed how the Duchess’ laidback appearance related to what she was talking about.

Mr Scobie told listeners: “Kate took it to the outdoors in the way she knows best. We’ve heard her talk a lot about the importance of spending time outside.

“Apparently it was filmed after she went for a run at her Anmer Hall estate. Hence why he was wearing a beanie and casual clothing.”

Harry

Royal news: Harry and Meghan’s relationship timeline (Image: Express)

5.20pm update: Princess Eugenie turns spotlight on heartbreaking 2004 tragedy – emotional video appeal

Princess Eugenie has made a rare appearance in a video for a cause close to her heart.

Princess Eugenie joined her friend Julia de Boinville in a brief clip filmed for the organisation they co-founded, The Anti-Slavery Collective.

The youngest daughter of Prince Andrew and Sarah Ferguson looked radiant and smartly dressed in a black high-neck jumper with exaggerated sleeves.

The brief video was released to mark the anniversary of the Morecambe Bay cockling disaster, during which an incoming tide claimed the lives of 21 Chinese undocumented immigrants who were picking cockles off the Lancashire coast.

In the clip, Julia and Eugenie took turns to speak about the horrific incident.

Starting, Julia explained to their audience they wanted to put the spotlight on the tragedy, saying: “Good morning everyone, today is the anniversary of the Morecambe Bay cockling disaster, so we wanted to take a moment with you to remember them on this important anniversary.”

Joining in, Eugenie said: “17 years ago, 21 Chinese undocumented immigrant labourers were drowned by an incoming tide after picking cockles off the Lancashire coast.”

Harry

Royal news: Prince Harry will have negotiations with senior royals in the spring (Image: PA)

4.25pm update: Prince Harry to be stripped of military titles as ‘new spat’ looms

Prince Harry will have to relinquish his beloved honorary military titles because Buckingham Palace wants “a clean break”, an expert has said – warning “there could be another spat on the horizon”.

Prince Harry’s hopes to retain his three military patronages appear to have been dashed as the palace stands firmly behind its plans to reassign them to other royals, according to a royal commentator.

During the summit in Sandringham in mid-January last year, the Queen, Prince Charles and Prince William agreed with Harry the terms of his and Meghan Markle’s exit as senior royals.

As the end of March is fast approaching, a friend of Prince Harry has told the Daily Telegraph the Duke “wants to keep” these military patronages, as his military work is particularly important to him.

However, royal expert Rebecca English said it doesn’t look like the palace was keen on granting this wish to the Duke of Sussex.

Speaking about the pending decision on his three military patronages, Ms English said during MailPlus’ Palace Confidential: “That was the one issue after the Sandringham summit that was yet to be resolved.

“Obviously the couple was told they would have to give up most of their links and patronages but Harry, as someone with a 10-year service under his belt, two tours in Afghanistan, and he set up the Invictus Games, he is very passionate about the work he does with the military.

“And the Queen agreed to let him keep his three honorary military titles in abeyance, until the 12-month probation period was up.”

Meghan Markle: Expert on Buckingham Palace ‘criticism’

3.51pm update: Meghan Markle and Prince Harry warned financial moves could dry up if royal links slashed

Meghan Markle and Prince Harry would struggle to make money with high-profile job opportunities without a connection to the Royal Family, an expert has claimed – sparking concerns over their financial power after this year’s Megxit review.

Meghan’s investment in a female-led startup is likely to be just the first of a series of financial opportunities the Duke and Duchess of Sussex will have in their post-royal life, according to expert in reputation, brand and political strategy Eric Schiffer.

However, Mr Schiffer believes the unbreakable links with the Royal Family provide a huge help to the Sussexes in accessing similar deals.

Commenting on Meghan’s investment in oat milk latte startup Clevr Blends, Mr Schiffer told Express.co.uk: “They are going to have more of these kinds of opportunities.

“To me this is where their wealth is really going to grow because they can get access to these ventures that are positioned well for massive paydays.

“And that’s one of their smartest paths in many ways, strategically from a business standpoint. I think you are going to see more of that in the future.” 

Royal

Royal news: Residences of the Royal Family (Image: Express)

1.30pm update: Meghan Markle’s ‘childish’ snub of the Queen set to inflame feud with Royal Family

Meghan Markle’s decision to skip a visit to the UK and snub the Royal Family has been branded a “childish mistake” by a leading royal expert.

Meghan Markle is not expected to accompany Prince Harry on his trip to the UK for key Royal Family events later this year.

Royal expert and author Robert Jobson issued a scathing assessment of the decision, calling it “childish” and a “mistake”.

He also said that the move would only inflame the ongoing feud and “turn it into a Netflix drama”.

Speaking to Royally Us, Mr Jobson said: “She won’t return, I can’t see her returning at all. She made it quite clear that she didn’t like it here.

“I think it’s a mistake but it’s inevitable that she won’t come back.

“How can they be seen avoiding media hype if she doesn’t put an end to it?

“The way to put an end to it is to be seen with your brother-in-law, your sister-in-law, have a big hug, make up and get on with it.”

Mr Jobson warned that the Royal Family will feel aggrieved by the decision, which will only heighten speculation about the relationship between the two sides.

He explained: “It’s almost turning it into a Netflix drama, which is not what the Royal Family would want. I think it’s rather sad and childish.

“I think if she came, people would stop talking about it.”

royal family news queen news queen elizabeth ii prince william meghan markle harry news

Royal Family news: Meghan may not return to the UK with Prince Harry this summer (Image: GETTY)

12.30pm update: Prince George ‘may never be king’ – Royal expert explains why

Prince George is third in line to the throne, but despite being raised to one day wear the crown, there is a chance the young royal will never be king – a royal expert has explained why.

Royal author of The Last Queen: How Queen Elizabeth II Saved the Monarchy Clive Irving has argued the monarchy could be abolished entirely before George even gets close to taking the throne.

The expert told Express.co.uk: “Before you can assess how William, and later George, might work out, you have to allow for the way the monarchy will look under King Charles, and whether under him it can survive.”

Mr Irving argues that the current Queen, like her late father, is an exemplar ruler and that it is thanks to her that the monarchy has survived so long.

Reflecting on the “less able” British monarchs who preceded the Queen, Mr Irving said: “The Queen and her father, George VI, were exceptions in the Windsor line that followed Queen Victoria, the only ones to be exemplary in the role.”

royal family news queen news queen elizabeth ii prince william meghan markle harry news

Royal Family news: Sophie and Edward have two children (Image: GETTY)

11.30am update: Secret royal plan to take on Sturgeon: Prince Edward and Sophie at heart of No10 plot

Sophie, Countess of Wessex, and Prince Edward were picked by Downing Street to go to Scotland to smooth tensions between London and Edinburgh and save the union, it has been claimed.

Sophie and Edward were at the centre of a proposed plan drawn up last year by Downing Street officials, insiders have claimed.

Worried about surging SNP support and the growing calls for a second independence referendum, No10 wanted Sophie and Edward to move to Scotland and become the local branch of the Royal Family.

The Daily Mail reports the couple would have moved into Holyrood Palace in Edinburgh, which is the Queen’s official residence in Scotland.

From there, they would have focused their attention on Scotland, carrying out more engagements and visits in the nation.

Prince Edward and Sophie received their Scottish titles Earl and Countess of Forfar in 2019, on the Earl’s 55th birthday.

royal family news queen news queen elizabeth ii prince william meghan markle harry news

Royal Family news: Princess Eugenie and Jack are expecting a baby (Image: GETTY)

10.20am update: Princess Eugenie could shatter tradition with royal baby name – expert chooses bold ideas

Princess Eugenie and Jack Brooskbank may “step away from tradition” and introduce a more modern flair into the Royal Family with her baby, according to an expert.

Princess Eugenie and her husband Jack may decide to break with royal tradition with the name of their royal baby, according to a motherhood expert.

Awena Naomie Ella, occupational therapist, wellbeing coach, and matrescence specialist, told Express.co.uk: “I hear Arthur and Alice are some of the bookie’s top predicaments.

“But with the modernisation of the monarchy showing up in this generation, is it possible these two young royals might step away from tradition and choose something a little more contemporary without royal precedent.

“Perhaps we will see the likes of Clementine, Emmeline, or Tatiana if it’s a girl, or Torquil, Erastus, Benedict for a son?”

In January, betting company Betfair placed odds of 8/1 for the names Alice and Arthur.

Godfrey, Grace and Henry, Prince Harry’s first name, have odds of 10/1.

Names such as Augusta, Thomas and Alexandra were placed at 14/1, while chances to name the royal baby after Prince Charles are at 22/1.

9am update: ‘Come home Harry!’ Prince Harry laid back in rare video as fans praise special rugby video

Prince Harry has reached out to rugby fans in a special new video to honour his role as patron of the Rugby Football Union.

Prince Harry has appeared in a touching new video to honour his ties to English rugby.

The Duke of Sussex looked relaxed as he delivered his first solo video message in a while from his living room in Santa Barbara, California.

Despite having stepped down as a senior royal and relocated to the USA, Harry has held onto his royal patronages and is still patron of the Rugby Football Union.

The special video was shared on Friday to celebrate 150 years of English rugby.

Royal journalist and author Omid Scobie retweeted the clip with the message: “Prince Harry, Vice-Patron of @EnglandRugby, has recorded a special video to mark its 150th season.”

Excited fans reacted to the tweet on social media with one calling on Harry to “come home” to the UK.

One fan wrote: “Harry. Come back mate. We need you here.”

Another gushed: “Love you Harry. Take care of yourself and your family.”

royal family news queen news queen elizabeth ii prince william meghan markle harry news

Royal Family news: Meghan’s popularity in Britain has dropped, according to a YouGov poll (Image: GETTY)

8am update: YouGov releases latest data for its ‘most popular royalty in the UK’ poll 

YouGov regularly interviews Britons to monitor how their opinion of members of the Royal Family has changed over time. 

Latest released data, based on interviews carried out between October and December 2020, show the Queen’s popularity dropping and Prince William snatching the first position. 

Here’s the full top 15 charts: 

  1. Prince William – 75 percent positive opinion 
  2. Queen – 73 percent positive opinion 
  3. Kate, Duchess of Cambridge – 67 percent positive opinion 
  4. Princess Anne – 50 percent positive opinion 
  5. Prince Philip – 49 percent positive opinion 
  6. Zara Tindall – 47 percent positive opinion 
  7. Prince Charles – 47 percent positive opinion 
  8. Prince Harry – 41 percent positive opinion 
  9. Camilla, Duchess of Cornwall – 37 percent positive opinion 
  10. Sophie, Countess of Wessex – 33 percent positive opinion 
  11. Meghan, Duchess of Sussex – 32 percent positive opinion 
  12. Princess Eugenie – 29 percent positive opinion 
  13. Prince Edward – 26 percent positive opinion 
  14. Princess Beatrice – 25 percent positive opinion 
  15. Prince Andrew – 6 percent positive opinion 

Additional reporting by Joe Varga and Bill McLoughlin. 





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