While the Cambridge children were front-and-center throughout the Jubbly last month, I was surprised that there wasn’t a moment where it was just the Queen and her heirs, meaning Charles, William and George. It’s clear that Kate was desperate to be included – and front and center – in everything, and that Kate and William thought it was visually important to have all three children everywhere during that four-day period (because they had successfully lobbied to exclude the Sussexes from as much as possible). My point, though, was that we actually should have seen at least one moment, one photo-op, where it was just the Queen and her heirs together. That didn’t happen. In fact, I don’t think we saw Prince Charles interact much at all with Prince George, although he did get to spend some time with Prince Louis (because Louis’s parents couldn’t handle him).
Charles’s lack of interaction with the Cambridge children, particularly George, is something of a sore spot for Charles. Every few years, he’ll basically commission an article in the Daily Mail or Telegraph in which “sources” complain about the Middleton influence on the Cambridge children, and how Charles would desperately love to spend more time with his grandchildren but he’s being blocked by William, Kate and Carole Middleton. Well, Prince George just turned nine years old, and some outlets decided to remind everyone of how Charles used to have a strained relationship with the Cambridges:
Prince Charles is said to have been left “upset” over his lack of involvement in planning a previous birthday party for Prince George. One recent birthday for the young royal is said to have definitively upset Charles, with a royal source saying it contributed to his resentment of Kate Middleton’s in-laws.
Planning of George’s third birthday party was helmed by Carole and Michael Middleton, which is said to have distressed Prince Charles, who was given little to do in the planning phase in 2017. The source says that Charles and Camilla were “invited” to the event organised by the Middleton family.
The source said: “Carole organised everything and Charles and Camilla were, of course, invited. He went, because he wasn’t prepared to miss out but Camilla didn’t go. Apparently she had other commitments.”
While other commitments may have prevented Camilla Parker-Bowles from attending the event, Prince Charles was busy with royal duties while Middleton-planned party raged on, with food and games reportedly on hand for the children. Instead, Charles spent the morning of the party at Clarence House discussing a rural protection campaign with Emma Bridgewater.
The reported feud between the Middleton in-laws and Prince Charles appears to be based off of the free schedule of Kate’s parents, who run their own business and can be far more flexible than Charles’ engagement-heavy days. It means that Carole and Michael both have plenty of time to drop in on their grandchildren, whereas the Prince of Wales is often tied up with royal assignments, Daily Express reported.
The source added: “Charles didn’t want to miss his grandson’s birthday, but the fact that the whole thing was essentially a Middleton event with Carole orchestrating the whole thing is exactly what upsets him. Charles feels rather left out. He gets very little time with his grandchildren and I know he gets upset about it because he has said so.”
Again, this is an old story. The current narrative about Charles is that he’s a lot “closer” to Prince William these days and he spends more time with his Cambridge grandchildren. I have my doubts though, obviously. Considering that the Cambridges are “moving to Windsor” this summer and every article about the move emphasizes that Kate wants to be closer to her mother, it does feel like Charles still isn’t spending time with his grandkids. Those kids have such a heavy Middleton influence and it will likely get even worse when Kate and the kids are isolated at Adelaide Cottage indefinitely, with Kate constantly running off to Bucklebury. I’m sure Carole is convinced that she’s raising the future king in little George.
Photos courtesy of Avalon Red, Instar.