Dismissing media allegations that he was “workshy”, Britain’s Prince William, just back from a trip to India and Bhutan, has said that he is ready to take on more royal duties.
The second in line to the throne has been recently referred to by some newspapers as “workshy William” and “reluctant royal” for not clocking up a large number of royal events.
“To be honest, I’m going to get plenty of criticism over my lifetime and it’s something that I don’t completely ignore, but it’s not something I take completely to heart... I take duty very seriously. I take my responsibilities very seriously.
“But it’s about finding your own way at the right time and if you’re not careful duty can sort of weigh you down an awful lot at a very early age and I think you’ve got to develop into the duty role,” the 33-year-old Duke of Cambridge told BBC on the eve of his grandmother, Queen Elizabeth II’s 90th birthday.
He said both his father, Prince Charles, and grandmother fully supported the fact that he was not yet fully engaged with royal duties, but that when the time came to accept more responsibilities he would be the first person to take them on.
William said he was focusing on his role as a father to Prince George and Princess Charlotte and his work as an air ambulance rescue pilot.
“I’m concentrating very much on my role as a father - I’m a new father and I take my duties and my responsibilities to my family very seriously and I want to bring my children up as good people with the idea of service and duty to others as very important. But if I can’t give my time to my children as well, I worry about their future, he said.
“Plus... I find the air ambulance role very important to me; it’s serving the community, working alongside extremely good professionals in the medical profession. And when the Queen decides she’s going to hand down more responsibilities, I’ll be the first person to accept them,” he added.
In a separate interview for a ‘Sky News’ documentary ‘The Queen At 90’, he spoke about his grandmother’s support after the death of his mother Princess Diana.
“She’s been a very strong female influence and having lost my mother at a young age, it’s been particularly important to me that I’ve had somebody like the Queen to look up to and who’s been there and who has understood some of the more, um, complex issues when you lose a loved one... So she’s been incredibly supportive and I’ve really appreciated her guidance,” he said.
To give a more personal insight to the Queen as a grandmother, he also recalled the first time he got scolded by the monarch for chasing a cousin into a lamppost while riding a quad bike at Balmoral Castle in Scotland. Prince William and his wife Kate Middleton have just returned from their maiden trip to India and Bhutan.