Desmond Tutu quielty attacks British and American hostility to Mandela
Prince Harry this morning attended a memorial for Nelson Mandela in London.
Harry, representing the Queen, joined senior politicians including David Cameron at the service in Westminster Abbey celebrating the life and work of Nelson Mandela, who died on December 5 aged 95.
The service heard South African singing and drumming and an address to the congregation by Kgalema Motlanthe, South African deputy president, and Peter Hain MP, the veteran anti-apartheid campaigner.
In an address to the congregation, Desmond Tutu, the former Archbishop of Cape Town thanked "splendid" and "amazing" anti-apartheid campaigners for their efforts in changing the "moral climate" over apartheid.
The royals have hired a new nanny for Prince George
Slipped into yesterday's announcement of the three-week mega-tour of Australia and New Zealand to be undertaken by the young royal family next month and over Easter was confirmation of a rumor that has been doing the rounds for some time now—that Kate has hired a nanny for George.
The identity of the nanny has still not been discovered, although she is believed to be English, in her twenties and already well-established with the family at Kensington Palace. We're on it.
Will and Kate's secretary Miguel Head slipped the news out when discussing the size of the royal party travelling to Australia, saying, "The party is similar in size to recent overseas visits undertaken by Their Royal Highnesses. It consists of me and the Duchess's Private Secretary, Rebecca Deacon, three press officers, a Tour Secretary, a Personal Assistant, a Hairdresser and an Orderly to help manage the logistics. Sir David Manning will also accompany Their Royal Highnesses throughout. A new addition to the party is, of course, Prince George’s nanny."
Sources have told the Royalist that William and Kate are believed to be 'gearing up' for a second child and the hiring of a nanny may be part of that plan.
Palace confirm that Prince George will make public appearance on New Zealand tour, assuring worldwide coverage
There had been some debate among news organizations whether they would go to the expense and trouble of sending full crews to cover the forthcoming tour of William and Kate to Australia and New Zealand.
But now that Kensington Palace has announced that Prince George will take part in his debut public engagement when he accompanies the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge to a nursery in New Zealand, a scramble for media places and plane tickets is underway.
The decision, announced yesterday afternoon, that George will make his first public appearance in Australia will ensure massive media attention on Will and Kate's trip down under, and may go some way to explaining why the baby has been kept so totally under wraps so far.
He has only been photographed three times by press photographers - once at his Christening and once at the hospital, and he was also photographed from a distance by a paparazzi when Kate changed planes in the Carribbean en route to Mustique.
Duchess to support anti-FGM campaign
Camilla has given her backing to efforts to stamp out female genital mutilation (FGM), according to a leading campaigner.
Anti-FGM charity founder Nimco Ali told the Daily Telegraph that Camilla gave the "royal seal of approval" during a reception for the Southbank Centre's Women of the World (WOW) festival, which starts on March 5.
The co-founder of the charity Daughters of Eve, created in 2010, said: "Camilla said she thinks the campaign is terrific and she heard about the stuff we're doing. She said she was impressed with the work and wanted more information about the campaign.
"I want to build the momentum. We're starting a conversation and we're breaking the cycle. My ultimate aim is that by the time my niece is eight - she's three now - there won't be a risk of FGM. I want to break that cycle and for her to say later: 'You had to actually do that [fight against FGM]?' She's the first person not to be cut in the family."
Kate may chop her hair in advance of Australia visit next month.
Meanwhile, back to the serious news - and is it really true that Kate Middleton is going to cut her hair?
That certainly is the rumor doing the rounds this week, with speculation that Kate may give her locks a dramatic chops before heading off on tour to Australia next month.
While most expect her to plump for a shorter, shoulder-length style, she is also being urged by some to adopt a more radical bob to avoid endless fussing with her hair when the weatehr is anything less than still.
Kate's hair has been somewhat schizophrenic of late. First of all there was the strange incident in November when - after a couple of months locked away with her new baby - Kate appeared on a public engagement in London with grey roots, and earlier this month on a visit to a school her hair, which now comes halfway down her chest, was whipped around in the wind.
Diana found to have Irish ancestry - so will William, Kate and baby George now visit the Emerald Isle?
County Cork is known in Ireland as the rebel county, so it is perhaps appropriate that a graveyard restoration project in Cork has uncovered the ancient burial tomb of a direct ancestor of Diana, Princess of Wales.
An unmarked mausoleum in East Cork was found to contain the remains of Princess Diana’s maternal great-great-grandfather, Baron Edmond Roche.
During the restoration process, volunteers discovered plaques documenting a list of the dead contained within the mausoleum.
Previously, an old folks tale had linked the tomb to the Roche family, of nearby Trabolgan, but there was no concrete proof whom the tomb might contain.
The discovery was made by volunteers, Eddie Tucker, Jimmy O’Leary and Michael Kenefick, who found the tombstone plaques buried under the roots of a tree growing out of the mausoleum.
“The volunteers found the plaques by accident while they were cleaning around the mausoleum and the tree,” heritage worker Grace Fox told the Irish Examiner.
Lord Fermoy had married Elizabeth Caroline Boothbym and their grandson Edmund Roche, the 4th Baron Fermoy, was the maternal grandfather of Diana, Princess of Wales.
“This is why it’s so important for local people to be involved in the restoration projects, because they know the local legends, they know what information to follow up,” Ms Fox said.
Letter to George III from his father revealed
Avoid war; don't trust flatterers, courtiers and ministers; and most importantly 'retrieve the glory of the Throne'.
That's just some of the advice given by Frederick, Prince of Wales to his son, the future George III in a previously unseen letter of 1749, which will be shown at a new exhibition entitled The First Georgians to be held at the Queen's Gallery in London.
The letter, drawn to our attention by our friends at Wistorical, contains more sound advice for young heirs,
"If you can be without war, let not your ambition draw you into it… Flatterers, Courtiers or Ministers, are easy to be got, but a true Friend is difficult to be found... Let your steadiness retrieve the glory of the throne."
Written 'out of love' and sent with 'the tenderest paternal affection', it urges the future monarch to behave as 'an Englishman born and bred'.
The author was the eldest son of George II, Frederick, who was first in line to the throne, but pre-deceased his father so never took the crown.
In the letter, Frederick credits his grandfather, George I, for his ideas, rather than his father. The roots of his antipathy towards his parents can be traced back to the time when, at just seven years of age, he was left behind in Hanover. Separated from Frederick for 13 years, George II clearly favoured his second son, William, Duke of Cumberland.
Once in London, Frederick presented himself as a fashionable man about town, entertaining freely and informally.
Frederick's mother, Queen Caroline, despised her son's relaxed manner: ‘Popularity always makes me sick’, she is reported to have said, ‘but Fretz’s popularity makes me vomit'.
Sources say Kate and William are thinking seriously about a new baby
Is Kate getting back into baby mode?
The Royalist has been told that friends of the young royals believe she may be 'gearing up' to get pregnant again.
And it also appears Kate has finally cracked on the issue of childcare, with a report from Daily Mail columnist Sebastian Shakespeare today saying that William and Kate are now hunting for a new full-time nanny.
The move comes despite Kate's previous insistence to friends that she would like to avoid having full-time help with Prince George. It could be that with thoughts of a second child looming larger, Kate is simply bowing to the inevitable sooner rather than later.
Carlos Gracida was killed after his horse was hit on the head by another player's mallet
A reminder, if one were necessary, of the dangers ever present in the kingly game of polo: Carlos Gracida, a polo legend who taught princes William and Harry, has been killed after his horse fell on him during a match in Florida.
Carlos Gracida 53, was killed in a freak accident, after his horse was hit on the head by another player's mallet.
The animal reared up and threw Mr. Gracida before landing on top of him and killing him.
The accident happened on Tuesday, and Gracida, one of the most successful polo players the sport has ever known, died on Tuesday night.
Pelly denies drink driving
More news from the great drink-driving trial of Prince William's pal, Guy Pelly, the pink cheeked London party organizer and nightclub promoter.
Pelly, 32, who refused to give a breath sample to police when stopped driving his Audi R8 through central London last year, telling a policeman, "I don't want to," when asked to blow into a breathalyzer machine, is now claiming in court that his iPhone could've interfered with the breath testing machine used in the police station!
It's certainly a ballsy defense. But will it work?
Charlotte Dale, an independent forensic alcohol consultant called by the prosecution, thought not, telling the court, according to a report in the Daily Mail, that the idea that, "two independent specimens," that matched each other to be incorrect was, "too incredible".
Memorial service for Mandela to be held in London next week
More evidence reaches us of the ongoing transformation of Prince Harry from party boy to serious man.
For it has been announced that Prince Harry is to represent his grandmother, the Queen, at a service to be held in honor of the late Nelson Mandela in London on Monday next week.
Harry, 29, will attend the national service of thanksgiving at Westminster Abbey on Monday 3 March, Clarence House has confirmed.
The service, which will be broadcasted by the BBC, will mark the life of the former South African president.
The Most Reverend Desmond Tutu, the former Archbishop of Cape Town, will give the address while the ceremony will be conducted by The Dean of Westminster, The Very Reverend Dr John Hall.
Pelly refused to blow into the breathalyzer, and when asked why he would not, replied, "I don't want to."
Guy Pelly is everything a pink-cheeked party promoting friend of the young Royals should be.
So whilst one must be censorious of the fact that he has been driving his vehicle around the streets of London while allegedly over the legal alcohol limit, let us at least take our hats off to the unusual line he gave the policeman who stopped him and asked for a breath sample.
Pelly refused to blow into the breathalyzer, and when asked why he would not, but replied, "I don't want to."
That, my friends, is the type of confidence you can only get from a British public school education.
Harry enagement rumors may be overstated
The American edition of OK! magazine is claiming that Prince Harry is imminently about to propose to girlfriend Cressida Bonas, or indeed may already have done so, but the Royalist says, don't get too excited just yet.
OK! reportedly makes the bold claim that he may have already proposed to Cressy, “But first he needs to go through certain royal protocols, such as asking his grandmother’s permission,” an 'insider' says, adding, “Palace sources say there’s not been a formal request made to her majesty yet, but the fact we’re hearing about it means it’s likely he’s already popped the question and they’re waiting until all the boxes are ticked before formally announcing it.”
We're not saving the date just yet.
Zara turns her baby into a cash cow, picking up a reported £100,000 fee for first pics of baby Mia
A sense of weary resignation at the crashing and predictable money-grabbing vulgarity of it all rather than shock pervades the Royalist’s delicate sensibility today as we contemplate the ghastly truth that Zara Phillips has sold the first pictures of her baby Mia, the queen's fourth great-grandchild, to Hello! Magazine.
They are spread across 13 pages of the European celeb weekly.
It’s out today, complete with details of how Zara decided to have an epidural in advance rather than try and ‘fight the pain’, and the admission that she hired a maternity nurse for the first four days.
Buckingham Palace are declining to comment on the Queen's reaction, merely stating that how Zara handles her publicity is up to her, but trust me - she's bound to be at least as depressed by this latest example of royal cashing-in (and please don't start on the 'Zara's not an HRH' argument) as she was when Zara's brother, the feeble Peter Phillips (or 'King Peter' as he is mockingly known by some detractors as his Canadian wife gave up her Catholic faith when he married her to ensure he could still technically succeed to the throne) sold his wedding pictures to the same publication. Still, at least Zara’s pictures don’t include all the other Royals, like Peter’s did.
Pippa's writing career, hamstrung by interfering royals, hits the buffers
Pippa Middleton's writing career may be in trouble.
Plans for a follow-up book by Kate's sister have been quietly dropped by her American publisher, Viking Press, after selling just 18,000 copies of her debut party planning book Celebrate, which, according to a catty source who spoke to the Sunday Times, is even less than Sarah Ferguson sold when she launched a writing career.
A Viking Press source told the paper's Atticus column: “Pippa’s Celebrate sales are nothing to celebrate. She was a superstar after the wedding, and everybody thought it would be a success. Even Sarah Ferguson sold more books when she started her writing career.”
Undoubtedly, Pippa's career is massively hamstrung by the fact that she has been banned by the Royal handlers from talking about the one thing that anyone is actually most interested in, her royal sister.
Prince Harry’s girlfriend is the opposite of Kate Middleton in every way. Tom Sykes examines the evidence: a pair of Doc Martens, some dungarees, and that infamous scrunchie.