JANET STREET-PORTER: There is still a role for a downsized royal family after the queen

A new TV documentary claims to show that we have nothing to fear if Prince Charles eventually becomes king.

A film crew followed the prince for a year, and succeeded in persuading a few gold nuggets from the loyal Royal, including the fact that he does not intend to interfere as he eventually ascends the throne. Really?

Make no mistake, the royal family (or the company as they call themselves) has an army of well-paid advisors and courtiers who realize that a prime time television program is a great PR opportunity to promote their brand.

While Charles turns 70, it is an opportunity to reassure those who annually contribute millions to the running costs of the Royals through taxes they can not refuse.

  A film crew followed the prince for a year, and succeeded in persuading a few gold nuggets from the loyal Royal, including the fact that he does not intend to interfere as he eventually ascends the throne. Really?

A film crew followed the prince for a year, and succeeded in persuading a few gold nuggets from the loyal Royal, including the fact that he does not intend to interfere as he eventually ascends the throne. Really?

Films about the British royal family nowadays appear on our television screen with monotonous regularity – as far as shameless propaganda is concerned, the news coverage seems little different from the promotional lens that was pumped in North Korea about their bizarre and closed president.

Prince Charles will have detested the whole proposition for a fly-on-the-wall movie and the resulting break-in – he is not someone who watches reality television or is familiar with the documentaries of flying on the wall.

But he will have been instructed to cooperate, to ensure that the Royal Brand does not experience any further erosion in popularity – especially because many of us can not see why Charles does not just bow and William takes over.

Prince Charles, Prince of Wales, Prince William, Duke of Cambridge, Prince George of Cambridge, Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge and Queen Elizabeth II stand on the balcony of Buckingham Palace during Trooping the Color in June 2015

Prince Charles, Prince of Wales, Prince William, Duke of Cambridge, Prince George of Cambridge, Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge and Queen Elizabeth II stand on the balcony of Buckingham Palace during Trooping the Color in June 2015

Prince Charles, Prince of Wales, Prince William, Duke of Cambridge, Prince George of Cambridge, Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge and Queen Elizabeth II stand on the balcony of Buckingham Palace during Trooping the Color in June 2015

When it comes to his enormous wealth, Prince Charles likes to say that he is the simple & # 39; lives, wears old overcoats and eats only one or two small meals a day – and thus reinforces the fantastic fairytale of the sober royal family.

His mother is regularly photographed for an old single-bar electric fire, which carries cashmere daily, and we know she eats her breakfast from a bowl of plastic containers.

Charles claims that he & # 39; self-sufficient & # 39; is that the income of the Duchy of Cornwall earns him income – but the operating costs of the whole royal household and the maintenance of their palaces are heavily subsidized by people who live in council flats and heavily petted houses.

Who will pay for Harry and Meghan to go to a larger apartment in Kensington Palace, now that a baby is coming?

How did the Crown increase so much property in the first place? They got it from aristocrats and feudal landowners, whose tenants often lived in poverty.

The Prince of Wales attends a memorial service at the Abuja Memorial, Nigerian National Military Cemetery, in Abuja Nigeria, on the last day of his trip to West Africa with the Duchess of Cornwall today

The Prince of Wales attends a memorial service at the Abuja Memorial, Nigerian National Military Cemetery, in Abuja Nigeria, on the last day of his trip to West Africa with the Duchess of Cornwall today

The Prince of Wales attends a memorial service at the Abuja Memorial, Nigerian National Military Cemetery, in Abuja Nigeria, on the last day of his trip to West Africa with the Duchess of Cornwall today

When I sound like a republican, it's because I grew up in a half-terraced house with an external toilet – but my working class parents worshiped the royal family – they gave a beacon of stability, and a sign that Britain would return to normal after the horrors of the Second World War 2. Although my father was a loyal left wing, he would not have dissolved the Royals.

Half a century ago, the queen spent her time with waves, smiles, wearing nice outfits and saying nothing at all. All news coverage in the media was completely respectful, with commentators accepting the position of the bent knee of weak servitude.

No wonder I rebelled against the wisdom received that the Royals could not hurt – despite that ridiculous BBC documentary that Elizabeth and Philip in Balmoral had a barbecue, just like my father and mother, except those on a large estate in the Highlands.

The Queen's PR problems began when her eldest son grew up and began writing hundreds of letters to politicians in an attempt to convey his opinion.

He told architects that he hated modern buildings & # 39; and insulted them with its antedeluvian taste in fake classical buildings. Charles (and his sister Anne and brother Andrew) all failed in marriage. Charles could not even divorce without the whole country being exposed to his dirty laundry.

In all this the queen said nothing. That is a great achievement and ensured that the monarchy has retained its popularity along with all the benefits.

As Charles turns 70, it is an opportunity to reassure those who annually contribute millions to the running costs of the Royals through taxes they can not refuse, writes Janet Street-Porter

As Charles turns 70, it is an opportunity to reassure those who annually contribute millions to the running costs of the Royals through taxes they can not refuse, writes Janet Street-Porter

As Charles turns 70, it is an opportunity to reassure those who annually contribute millions to the running costs of the Royals through taxes they can not refuse, writes Janet Street-Porter

As she approaches the end of her reign, there is a crisis because most of us have no idea how Charles will be King. That is why Prince Charles used a documentary to tell us that he will not meddle & # 39; with politics – but he does not offer to give up his material wealth or his army of servants.

There is still a role for a limited royal family in modern Britain – as a major tourist attraction. They can house foreign dignitaries and promote international relations, support hundreds of charities and charities, and make a positive contribution through fundraising.

Harry and William have already realized that the royal family must be slimmed down and that Harry's child will not necessarily have a title or an official role.

Thank God there is change going on, albeit in a snail's pace. Meanwhile, the courtiers and the advisors have one big problem to deal with – the possible disaster of King Charles.

Charles is almost two years younger than me, but he seems badly affected by life. In public he still seems ill at ease, hand in the pocket of an expensive suit, perfect pocket hankerchief and impeccable cufflinks and tie, all chosen (no doubt) by one of his servants.

I get up in the morning and start drinking what I had drunk the night before, eating the same basic breakfast, because it does not require any thought.

Charles operates in a world of unimaginable luxury, rattled and pampered, with special toilet seats, tea bags and porcelain that travel everywhere he deigns to visit. The documentary reveals that he works so hard that he falls asleep at his desk – well, that is also true for most people, it is nothing special. Employees who drive in taxis or buses, or work in warehouses in Amazon, know that only too well.

Next week Prince Charles 70 and his sons say they would like to spend more time with his grandchildren. William says & # 39; if he is there, he is brilliant. But we need him as much as possible. Maybe that's the code for – & # 39; go aside, father, and let me take over & # 39 ;.

And who can blame him?

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