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Bloodthirsty Prince

William's Bloodsports Problem

Why was William shooting wild boar the day before a new conservation push was unveiled?

On Friday night, royal correspondents received a press notice from Prince Charles’s office at Clarence House. The release, which was embargoed until yesterday and officiously emblazoned with a string of conditions on broadcasters and journalists who wished to use the material, announced that Prince William and his father Prince Charles were going to release a video on Sunday urging the public to “unite for wildlife”. In the video William and Charles talk about the unprecedented levels of killing of endangered species like elephants, which are being killed at the shocking rate of 100 animals per day by the illegal wildlife trade.

The video would conclude, it was announced, with the father and son  and uttering the phrase, “Let’s Unite For Wildlife” in Vietnamese, Mandarin, Swahili, Arabic and Spanish.

It was an undoubtedly well-intentioned move, and William and Charles had obviously decided that getting their message out was worth risking the inevitable criticism that they were lecturing the rest of the world. Last year, William gave up his full time job with the British military to focus full-time on conservation work, so this video, timed to coincide with a series of events and think-ins in London this week on the illegal wildlife trade, seemed a logical response. William, patron of numerous anti-poaching organisations, will be a very visible totem of the cause throughout the week.

But, even as the press releases were being sent out, and journalists were getting their first sneak peeks at the nine-minute film, extraordinarily ill-timed news was filtering out that the next day’s front page of the Sun would be carrying the story that William, accompanied by his brother Harry, had flown off to Spain for the weekend to take part in a wild boar hunt at Finca La Garganta, the Spanish estate of Britain’s richest man, the Duke of Westminster.

bad timing

Report: Will & Charles to Hunt

Report: Will & Charles to Hunt WPA Pool

Weekend before commencing wildlife awareness drive.

You’d think a royal adviser or someone could have stopped this from happening. The Sun is reporting that Prince William is embarking on a hunting trip in Spain over the weekend, just before he’s scheduled to take part in a series of activities to save endangered wildlife. On Monday, Will and Prince Charles are scheduled to release a joint video message discussing illegal wildlife trading, followed by a visit to the United for Wildlife Symposium at the Zoological Society London on Wednesday. On Thursday, the pair are scheduled to attend a London Conference on the Illegal Wildlife Trade. Not a good look, boys. Put the rifles down.

Read it at E! News

Star Struck

Taylor on Singing With Will

Taylor says she was 'surprised and flattered' when William suggested they sing along with Jovi

Taylor Swift has said that she found singing "Livin' On A Prayer" with Prince William and Bon Jovi 'surreal' but said she would take to the stage with the young royal again in a flash.

Taylor told the Mail on Sunday's Event magazine that it was Prince William's idea.

Swift explained, "Prince William looked at me and said, 'I'll do it if you do it, too' and then he took my hand. I was surprised and flattered and it felt surreal and natural at the same time.

"We jumped on the stage and started to sing and then we were really yelling into the microphone and clapping hands. I still can't believe I've sung with Prince William. Even through all that I could hear his voice and it's pretty good. A nice tone. I'd definitely say he has got star quality. If he ever wants me to sing with him again I'll be there. It was a night I will remember until I'm very, very old. The whole evening was completely wondrous."

It's a Parody, Folks

Harry's Spoof "Look Back"

Comedy duo's vid parodies "Look Back" feature for Harry

You know the facebook 'A Look Back' feature that automatically selects highlights of your facebook life? Here's what Prince Harry's might look like, as imagined by comedians Jonny Lang and Jason Burke, and brought to our attention by our friends at The Poke.

Prince Harry deleted his facebook account - maintained under the pseudonym Spike Wells - in 2012.

New Prince George Pics

Prince George Papped!

Kate and baby photographed changing planes on way to Mustique family holiday

Another Royal privacy row has broken out after the first unauthorized pictures of Prince George were published today.

The pictures show Kate Middleton changing planes on her way to Mustique, with Prince George held casually on her hip, and were published in Europe by Hello! magazine today. They are available worldwide on the mag's app.

The pictures are on the front page of the mag and eight further pages inside. Kate, wearing shades, looks happy and relaxed and George is wearing a stripey blue sun hat.

Hmm, I seem to remember someone predicting that Kate and William would have trouble safeguarding George’s privacy once they stepped outside the closely guarded confines of their UK haunts, where photographers and editors are still on their best behavior as the hacking trial continues.

New Old Pics

Unseen Photos of Queen Victoria

Intimate photos to go on display at the Getty Center

An extraordinary collection of over 200 previously unseen Royal photographs is to be exhibited at the Getty Center in LA as part of a new exhibition lifting the lid on the private life of Queen Victoria.

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The Queen and Prince Albert, May 11, 1854 (Royal Collection Trust/© Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II 2013)

Some of the pictures show the Queen at the Scottish retreat, Balmoral or with her husband Prince Albert, posing for formal portraits, however it is bound to be the more relaxed glimpses of the Queen with all or some of her nine children that will garner the most attention.

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Queen Victoria Diamond Jubilee Portrait, July 1893 (Royal Collection Trust/© Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II 2013)

Royal SOS

How ‘Downton’ Can Save the Queen

The Queen’s reserve fund is down to its last million pounds. Her palaces are crumbling and boilers need fixing. Enter the Crawleys of ‘Downton Abbey’, masters of fending off financial peril.

In Downton Abbey, the Crawley family’s tenuous hold on their fortune has so far been maintained through two things. Lord Grantham, the paterfamilias, had the good sense to marry Lady Cora, a rich American, and, as times have gotten tougher, the mysterious delivery of plot-altering letters somehow, every time, carry a miraculous reprieve for Downton Abbey. Until the next time.

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The Daily Beast

If life mirrors art, the Queen might well be hoping her great-grandson Prince George eventually falls in love with the offspring of a rich American hedge-funder, who will oversee the continued polishing of the silver at Buckingham Palace. Her Majesty’s reserve cash fund is down to its last million pounds. A report published by the Public Accounts Committee (PAC) found that for 2012-2013, the royal household’s budget of $51.38 million—which covers building maintenance, staff wages, and travel for royal duties—had been exceeded by almost $4 million.

The shortfall meant the Royal Household had drawn on its reserve fund, whose value had fallen from $35 million in 2001 to $1 million today. Thirty-nine percent of Royal buildings, which the Royal Household is duty-bound to maintain, are in an unacceptable state, the Committee found.

Did He Curtsey?

Grayson Attends Palace In Frock

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John Stillwell/Press Association

Cross-dressing ceramacist looked fabulous in midnight blue and a big hat.

The transvestite artist and potter Grayson Perry arrived at Buckingham Palace today for his investiture as a Commander of the British Empire looking fabulous in a midnight blue dress and an enormous hat.

The provocative ceramacist, who was honored by Prince Charles in today's ceremony, also carried a sensible-looking black handbag of the sort the Queen often uses.

Mr. Perry, who was awarded the Turner Prize in 2003, is a noted and provocative ceramacist who has said in interviews that he liked to dress in women's clothes from an early age.

At the age of 15 he began to go out in public dressed as a woman, and was thrown out of his family home.

Royal Co-Incidence

Charles and Camilla Delivered By Same Ob-Gyn

Charles and Camilla visit King's Hospital in London

Here is a hitherto little-known fact; Prince Charles and his wife Camilla both delivered by the same guy.

Prince Charles made the curious revelation on an official visit yesterday to the King's Hospital in Camberwell, south London, where as he told patients, "My darling wife was born here," adding, "Amazingly we had the same gynecologist and nurse."

On November 14 1948 – a year after Camilla was born at King's - Charles was delivered by the Queen obstetrician, Sir William Gilliat, who worked at King's, in the more rarefied surroundings of Buckingham Palace.

As well as looking around the teaching hospital, the duchess was also shown around the Haven Center, which is one of three centers in London that help around 140 victims, including men and children, who have been victims of sexual assault.

Good Clean Fun

Harry Party Photos Hit Tumblr

New pics circulate on image-sharing site

A new set of photographs of Prince Harry partying the night away (fully clothed) look set to go viral right about now, after the shots, allegedly taken in South Africa in 2013, were published on a tumblr account of a girl named Brent Brake who goes under the tumblr handle Brooklyn Blond

The informal photographs show Prince Harry kneeling on one knee and singing a song to the girl, who is pictured wearing a straw hat, at what appears to be a party in South Africa. In another shot she is shown kissing him on the cheek, while h has his arm wrapped around her and is grinning. She says the photos were taken in fall 2013. Harry was dating Cressida then and she has made no claims of being romantically linked to Harry.

In some of the other shots, the prince is shown partying and dancing with Brent, who claims in her posts to have been friends with Prince Harry for several years.

She adds that she has several more photographs of Prince Harry but that she will not be posting them on the popular photograph and image sharing site as she, "likes to keep them private".

Name Announced

Royal Baby Named Mia Grace

Mike Tindall shares name on twitter

Prince George's birth was announced via an easel placed outside Buckingham Palace, but Zara Philips and her husband Mike Tindall were  more democratic, using twitter, and today they used the site to announce the name of their daughter, Mia Grace.

Former England international rugby star Mr Tindall tweeted: 'For everyone who has asked what our daughters name, it's Mia Grace Tindall.'

Zara gave birth last week to the 7lb 12oz girl, who is 16th in line to the throne and is the Queen's fourth great-grandchild. Like Zara, she will have no royal title nor be an HRH as she is descended through the maternal line.

Royalty Light

William and Kate - Just Celebs?

Historian who doubts George will ever be king questions William and Kate's gravitas

Prince William and Kate Middleton do not have the gravitas of traditional royals and are simply "celebrities", a British historian said today.

Christopher Lee, who wrote the definitive Radio 4 British history program This Sceptred Isle, said the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge should be lumped in the same category as David and Victoria Beckham.

"I don't think they rate with the Beckhams, but I put them in that slot," he told the Daily Mail.

Lee, an ex-BBC defense correspondent, says the couple do not have the "gravitas" to be anything other than celebrities.

Game of Thrones

Charles Versus The Young Royals

Charles seeks to refocus attention on worthy serious issues - and away from Kate's clothing choices

Is Prince Charles jealous of his sons’ – and Kate Middleton’s - media profile?

That will be the conclusion many royal watchers will arrive at when the news breaks that he is taking control of the young royals’ press operation.

For, following hard on the heels of the revelation that Prince Charles will soon be overseeing the Queen’s press office, by moving his press team into Buckingham Palace and subsuming her press office into his own, the Royalist now learns that the same fate awaits the Kensington Palace press office, which was established just last year before the royal baby was born to represent William, Kate and Harry.

Given the importance of press coverage in the life of the Royal family, the move represents a significant blow to the young royals attempts to set up an alternative court in Kensington Palace.

Plus, He Shaved

Harry's South Pole Bender

Dominic West lifts lid on South Pole celebrations

Prince Harry celebrated reaching the South Pole with a "two-day bender" and the teams took turns drinking champagne out of one of his fellow trekkers prosthetic leg as part of their celebrations, the actor Dominic West said today at a high-spirited press conference to mark the success of the mission.

Mr. West was appearing with Prince Harry at a press conference about the Walking With The Wounded expedition which saw a group of wounded veterans trek through freezing temperatures and hostile conditions to the South Pole.

The only bad news? Prince Harry had shaved.

Yup, the beard is officially no more.

Tragedy

Cressida's Stepfathers Suicide

Christopher Shaw, 76, bon viveur and legendary host, takes his life after a long battle with a terminal illness

Tragedy has struck the family of Cressida Bonas, Prince Harry’s girlfriend, after her party-loving stepfather, who friends say was a major influence on her life, was found dead on Friday, after allegedly taking an overdose of prescription pills.

Wiltshire Police told the Daily Beast the death is not being treated as suspicious.

Christopher Shaw

Christopher Shaw at the races (Richard Young/Rex)

The body of Christopher Shaw, 76, a former Grenadier Guards officer and merchant banker, was discovered in his flat in Salisbury by the owner of the property.

READ ON

The Royalist

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IN CASE YOU MISSED

Dissecting Cressida's Style

Dissecting Cressida's Style

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.

Sibling Rivalry

Mad About Pippa

Not A Stretch

Kate Flashes Tummy on First Solo Engagement Since Birth

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