Prince William and Kate, the Prince and Princess of Wales, are reportedly “worried” their nine-year-old son may experience too much pressure if he takes on a prominent role at his grandfather’s Coronation. Royal commentator Tom Quinn suggested there is a “bit of an argument” going on behind the scenes over the part Prince George could possibly play on May 6 without affecting him or stirring negatively the public opinion.
The author of the newly-released book Gilded Youth told Express.co.uk: “I’ve heard from my contacts that there is a bit of an argument going on about whether George should play a more formal role.
“I’ve heard that Kate and William are worried that it will be too much for him.”
The Prince and Princess of Wales have strived to shield their children from the public eye and provide them with a childhood as normal as possible despite their position in the Firm.
While Prince George, Princess Charlotte and Prince Louis have already made a series of appearances at official events, they are being gradually introduced to public duties.
Prince George has been accompanied on most engagements by his younger sister Charlotte, with the children marking together several firsts including their first attendance at the Christmas Day service in Sandringham in 2019 and their first official visit to Cardiff in 2022.
Brother and sister were also supporting each other when the eyes of millions of people were on them, including when they served as pageboy and flower girl at the Duke and Duchess of Sussex’s nuptials in 2018 and at the funeral of Queen Elizabeth II last September.
Mr Quinn said concerns over George’s possible role at the upcoming Coronation of King Charles isn’t simply due to the young age of the heir to the throne but also to previous choices made by the Firm.
Mentioning another reason for Kate and William’s possible worries, he said: “It’s almost an echo of the way William and Harry were sometimes made to attend formal occasions that they shouldn’t have been made to attend – most famously, the funeral of their mother, and walking behind her coffin at their age.
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“A lot of people criticised that and said that it was a horrible thing to make two boys that young, and especially Harry, do.
“So I think people are remembering this and thinking, ‘Well hang on a minute, if George is some sort of a pageboy, or has a similar role at the Coronation, is that going back too far towards the traditional roles?’
“So I’ve heard that there is a debate going on quite fiercely at the moment about how to do that. And, as far as I’ve heard, it hasn’t been decided yet.”
However, Mr Quinn’s guess is that the nine-year-old will play a role during the Coronation, “but it won’t be too prominent”.
This comes after a report emerged in late February stating the Prince and Princess of Wales were “mulling over” whether their eldest child should be included in the upcoming historic ceremony and were considering what would be best for their son given the public attention and media coverage coming attached to the event.
George, who is destined to be crowned at Westminster Abbey too one day, is likely to have a role during the ceremony, the Daily Telegraph wrote, while Princess Charlotte and Prince Louis are expected to attend the event as spectators.
Prince George would not be the first young heir to the throne to attend a Coronation.
Before him, 11-year-old Princess Elizabeth sat through the five-hour-long service which saw King George VI and Queen Elizabeth crowned in 1937.
And the current sovereign was only four when he attended the three-hour-long Coronation of Elizabeth II in 1953.
Gilded Youth by Tom Quinn, published by Biteback, is available in hardback at £15.