News / Europe

Prince Charles Says He's in No Hurry to Become King

Britain's Prince Charles (R) speaks to Clare Curran and her daughter Jessie, 6, during a visit to mark National Police Memorial Day at St David's Hall in Cardiff, Wales, Sep. 29, 2013.
Britain's Prince Charles (R) speaks to Clare Curran and her daughter Jessie, 6, during a visit to mark National Police Memorial Day at St David's Hall in Cardiff, Wales, Sep. 29, 2013.
Reuters
Prince Charles' passion in life is his charitable work and he wants to get as much done as he can before becoming king when, in the words of an aide, “the prison shades” close, according to Catherine Mayer, editor-at-large of the U.S. magazine Time.
 
After months of research involving rare access to the Prince of Wales, 64, and to several of his residences, as well as interviews with more than 50 aides, friends and critics, Mayer has written a long profile of the heir-to-the-throne in the magazine.
 
In an accompanying essay giving Mayer's personal point of view on the prince, available free on the Time website, she seeks to dispel the perception sometimes reflected in media coverage that Charles is impatient to become monarch.
 
“I found a man not, as caricatured, itching to ascend the throne, but impatient to get as much done as possible before, in the words of one member of his household, 'the prison shades' close,” Mayer writes in the online essay.
 
The aide's quote was seized on by numerous British newspapers but Mayer told the BBC they had “sexed up” her article and Charles himself had not used the word “prison”.
 
“Prince Charles' passion lies with the charitable empire he has built up, and all of his initiatives,” she said.
 
In his own comments to Mayer, Charles seeks to convey that passion to a sometimes skeptical public.
 
“We're busily wrecking the chances for future generations at a rapid rate of knots by not recognizing the damage we're doing to the natural environment, bearing in mind that this is the only planet that we know has any life on it,” he says.
 
Charles hints at a degree of frustration at not always being understood or trusted by the public, saying that he takes joy in his wife Camilla and his new grandson Prince George, “which is what this is all about”.
 
He then adds: “It's everybody else's grandchildren I've been bothering about, but the trouble is if you take that long a view people don't always know what you're on about.”
 
Mayer writes that since 87-year-old Queen Elizabeth has started easing up on her official duties and Prince Charles has been picking up the slack, he accepts these additional duties “joylessly”.
 
The profile says he believes in the monarchy as a force for good but accepts that people might question its relevance.
 
“He prefers not to focus on his accession, which, after all, means losing his mother. And far from itching to assume the crown, he is already feeling its weight and worrying about its impact on the job he has long been doing,” the profile says.
 
In the nuanced and broadly positive article, Mayer points out that Charles has founded more than 50 charities, that he raised 224 million pounds for them in the 12 months to March 2013, and that his flagship Prince's Trust charity has helped 650,000 young people across Britain over the years.
 
The profile also reveals colorful snippets of the prince's life including that he scrunches his toes inside his shoes to stay awake during boring speeches and that some of his aides refer to the rich donors he cultivates as his “Bond villains”.
 
It also includes a light-hearted quote from actress Emma Thompson, an old friend, who jokes that dancing with Charles is “better than sex.”

You May Like

Turkey's Controversial Reform Bill Giving Investors Jitters

Homeland security reform bill will give police new powers in search, seizure, detention and arrests, while restricting the rights of suspects, their attorneys More

Audio Slideshow In Kenyan Prison, Good Grades Are Path to Freedom

Some inmates who get high marks could see their sentences commuted to non-custodial status More

'Rumble in the Jungle' Turns 40

'The Champ' knocked Foreman out to regain crown he had lost 7 years earlier when US government accused him of draft-dodging and boxing officials revoked his license More

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Victorious Secularists Face Challenge to Form Government in Tunisiai
X
Henry Ridgwell
October 30, 2014 11:39 PM
Official results from Tunisia show the Islamist Ennahda party has failed to win the second free election since the so-called "Arab Spring" uprising in 2011. Ennahda, which handed power to a government of technocrats pending the elections, lost out to the secular party Nidaa Tounes. Henry Ridgwell reports from London that the relatively peaceful poll offers some hope in a volatile region.
Video

Video Victorious Secularists Face Challenge to Form Government in Tunisia

Official results from Tunisia show the Islamist Ennahda party has failed to win the second free election since the so-called "Arab Spring" uprising in 2011. Ennahda, which handed power to a government of technocrats pending the elections, lost out to the secular party Nidaa Tounes. Henry Ridgwell reports from London that the relatively peaceful poll offers some hope in a volatile region.
Video

Video Africa Tells its Story Through Fashion

In Africa, Fashion Week is a riot of colors, shapes, patterns and fabrics - against the backdrop of its ongoing struggle between nature and its fast-growing urban edge. How do these ideas translate into needle and thread? VOA’s Anita Powell visited this year’s Mercedes Benz Fashion Week Africa in Johannesburg to find out.
Video

Video Smugglers Offer Cheap Passage From Turkey to Syria

Smugglers in Turkey offer a relatively cheap passage across the border into Syria. Ankara has stepped up efforts to stem the flow of foreign fighters who want to join Islamic State militants fighting for control of the Syrian border city of Kobani. But porous borders and border guards who can be bribed make illegal border crossings quite easy. Zlatica Hoke has more.
Video

Video China Political Meeting Seeks to Improve Rule of Law

China’s communist leaders will host a top level political meeting this week, called the Fourth Plenum, and for the first time in the party’s history, rule of law will be a key item on the agenda. Analysts and Chinese media reports say the meetings could see the approval of long-awaited measures aimed at giving courts more independence and include steps to enhance an already aggressive and high-reaching anti-corruption drive. VOA’s Bill Ide has more from Beijing.
Video

Video After Decades of Pressure, Luxembourg Drops Bank Secrecy Rules

European Union finance ministers have reached a breakthrough agreement that will make it more difficult for tax cheats to hide their money. The new legislation, which had been blocked for years by countries with a reputation as tax havens, was approved last week after Luxembourg and Austria agreed to lift their vetoes. But as Mil Arcega reports, it doesn’t mean tax cheats have run out of places to keep their money hidden.
Video

Video Kobani Refugees Welcome, Turkey Criticizes, US Airdrop

Residents of Kobani in northern Syria have welcomed the airdrop of weapons, ammunition and medicine to Kurdish militia who are resisting the seizure of their city by Islamic State militants. The Turkish government, however, has criticized the operation. VOA’s Scott Bobb reports from southeastern Turkey, across the border from Kobani.

All About America

AppleAndroid