In a documentary that will air next week, Prince William and Prince Harry have revealed their father, Prince Charles, is just like any other – he’s embarrassing! He has a habit of ‘rabbiting on’, and laughing at awkward moments, with The Prince of Wales himself explaining he is yet to change one of his grandchildrens’ nappies!
Talking to TV duo, Ant and Dec, William and Harry spoke of their father’s tendency to ‘rabbit on’ in a documentary on the 40th anniversary of The Prince’s Trust, Charles’ personal charitable vehicle.
The Duke of Cambridge, 33, remembers one occasion in which a ‘family trait’ came to the fore: at a school play in which he was performing, the special effects malfunctioned. Prince Charles and Prince Philip were sitting in the audience and laughed raucously at the mishap. William said it runs in the family to find it amusing ‘when things go wrong’.
William and Harry also described how The Prince of Wales will sit in his study for hours on end, hand writing letters. As the day progresses, however, Charles’ notoriously hard-to-read handwriting gets worse; the brothers said the often struggled to ascertain if they were being praised or reprimanded in letters from their father.
The Prince of Wales said that he has so far avoided any nappy changes for both Prince George, 2, and Princess Charlotte, 7 months. But he is thankful for having them, as they will be able to ‘look after me when I’m tottering about’. Aged 67, Prince Charles is still working, performing over 400 engagements per year, when most are retiring and slowing down.
Ant and Dec, who followed Charles around for 12 months to make ‘When Ant and Dec met Prince Charles: 40 Years of the Prince’s Trust’, explained there may have been some issues with accents. Co-host Ant McPartlin, said that he thought Charles occasionally didn’t understand his strong Geordie accent.
“We had no issues with his accent, but I think he may have had a few with mine,” said Ant. “I would ask him a question and sometimes he would just smile. Then Dec would ask the same question and get a full answer!”
“He was lovely about Camilla and the two boys and being a granddad. It was fascinating just to hear him talk like that.”
In Clarence House, Charles and Camilla’s London home, the house is full of family photos, including a number of private family moments of Prince George with his grandad.
“What got me was how I could actually relate to him when he talked about his family, which seems crackers given how totally different we are. But he talked about sitting with his granddad, King George, and remembering how he could feel the sofa because he was always wearing short trousers.”
Another revelation about the show, was that they occasionally forgot themselves, having spent so much time with the Prince.
“Protocol wise, we did occasionally forget stuff,” confessed Ant. “I did find myself getting a bit over familiar and grabbing His Royal Highness and slapping him on the back a bit – I had to keep stopping myself.”
Ant and Dec have worked with Charles for a number of years, supporting The Prince’s Trust, and it is no surprise they have struck up something of a friendship.
The pair also revealed they received a birthday present from the Prince: a hip flask! “[He gave us a] lovely little hip flask with beaker tops if we fancy a wee dram on the golf course.”
Dec Donnelly said that their families were so surprised at the access they got to the first-in-line: “I was telling them we were two doors away from his bedroom. They still don’t believe us.”
Watch the documentary on ITV, 4th January, at 9pm.