Royal Roundup March 17-26: George, London & GMOs

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A few things that have happened since Paris:

  • Perhaps first and foremost, Kensington Palace announced that in September, Prince George will start school at Thomas’s Battersea School in London. His matriculation will coincide with when the Cambridges are expected to move back to London full time, allowing the Duke to begin duties as a full time Royal after stepping down from his job as a pilot. Interestingly, the school is co-ed, which will mark a change as compared to William and the Prince of Wales. Likely the move has to do with the practicality of Princess Charlotte following suit in a few years and wanting the siblings to attend school together (or only having to do one school run in the mornings), but the switch to a primary education inclusive of girls feels like a fresh and positive change of pace for the next generation.

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  • Last weekend Prince Harry visited an HIV charity in Leicester, the same one which his mother, the late Princess of Wales, visited in 1991. The charity is celebrating its 30th anniversary and Harry, in a nod to his mother’s groundbreaking work in humanizing HIV sufferers and the affliction, has followed in her footsteps by advocating on behalf of education about the disease. Most recently, he took an AIDs test this past December alongside musical artist, Rihanna. The engagement was but one in a regular clip Harry has kept up over the past month or so, leading to quite a few headlines comparing him to his brother, who is, shall we say, less of a media darling these days. Most recently, there has been speculation that William’s bad press forced Harry to cancel a ski trip he had planned with his girlfriend, Meghan Markle, and so he is instead in London this weekend, laying low.

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  • On Friday, the Prince of Wales visited King’s College Hospital in South London where victims of Wednesday’s attack in Westminster are convalescing. Per The Telegraph’s reporting:

King’s treated eight people initially, two of whom have since been discharged, and of the remaining six, one has died – 75-year-old Leslie Rhodes, a retired window cleaner from Streatham in South London. […] Two people remain in hospital in a critical condition, one with life-threatening injuries. Two police officers hurt in the attack are also in hospital with ‘significant injuries.’ The pensioner’s life support was withdrawn on Thursday night, taking the death toll of innocent victims to four.

  • This coming Wednesday, Charles is due to depart for Romania, which he will tour for three days solo, akin to William and Kate’s visit to Paris last week, before meeting his wife, the Duchess of Cornwall, in Italy. The couple will carry out engagements throughout the country for four and a half days, before traveling to Vienna for a day and then returning to the UK. The tour is yet another showing of the soft diplomacy deemed necessary in the wake of the latest Brexit news, assuring European countries that the UK very much remains in the mix.

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  • And in some fun Princess Royal news, she made headlines this week for saying she wanted to grow genetically modified crops after Brexit, at odds with her brother, Charles’s, staunch anti-GMO stance. Anne said in a radio interview:

“But surely if we’re going to be better at producing food of the right value, then we have to accept that genetic technology – whether you call it modification or anything else – is going to be part of that. How you define what is harmful or what is good, it seems to me rather more difficult. Most of us would argue that we’ve been genetically modifying food since man started to be agrarian. But everybody would say it doesn’t happen so quickly [as it can with GM]. So being able to understand what those changes mean: if you change one aspect of a plant, how does it affect the rest of the environment around it and does it have a long-term impact? That’s probably a very long term impact and we may not see that for a long time. So to say ‘no we mustn’t go there just in case’ is probably not a practical argument. I do think in the future your gene technology has got real benefits to offer, which will have maybe an occasionally downside, but I suspect not very many.”

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  • This, courtesy of the Royal Family’s official Twitter handle:

  • And finally, the Queen, or to be specific, the Queen and her Prime Minister. It’s been reported that Theresa May insisted on carrying out her scheduled meeting with the Queen at Buckingham Palace on Wednesday evening despite the surrounding area not yet being declared secure by police. A government source told reporters, “In her mind yesterday afternoon, she was always going to keep her appointment with Her Majesty. Keeping her informed about government business is an important part of how our system works.”

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