Prince Harry and Meghan Markle aren’t celebrities — celebs pay their own bills

OK, concentrate. Here’s your starter for ten: Who are the godparents of William and Kate’s children? Nope, me neither.

If pushed, I might hazard a guess that Prince William’s brother Harry was in the mix somewhere, but other than that . . .  nada, zilch, nowt.

Prince Harry and Meghan Markle seem unsure whether they’re royal or celebs

And yet they were all made public at the time. So why all the cloak-and-dagger secrecy surrounding the godparents to Meghan and Harry’s son Prince Archie?

He’s seventh in line to the throne and, quite frankly, if the majority of us had been standing next to the font, we’d probably struggle to name rumoured godparent Charlie van Straubenzee the following day.

I have just typed it and I’ve forgotten it already. So why risk losing the already fragile goodwill of the public by treating them as if they’re tiresome selfie-hunters? It’s like those celebrities who put a “no photos” hand up when you haven’t even got your camera out.

Or the ones who tell journalists the most anodyne fact about themselves, then add: “But don’t quote me on that.” As if.

It reminds me of the time when I found myself as a “plus one” at the wedding of a Z-list celebrity who had flogged his nuptials to Hello! magazine.


Post-ceremony, the guests were left hanging around as the happy couple did their contracted, painfully proooootracted photoshoot, so I sauntered off to the shade of the nearest tree to make a phone call. Within seconds, the groom appeared at my side and hissed: “If you’re filing copy on this, I will have you removed.”

I was simply calling home to say goodnight to my five-year-old. Harry and Meghan’s disproportionate defensiveness over their son’s christening smacks of a similar celebrity narcissism.

The reality, one fears, is that this whole “privacy please” charade is yet another example where the Duke and Duchess of Sussex are blurring the lines between “royal” and “celebrity”. Being the latter means you pay for everything yourself.

But being royal means you have 24-hour police protection funded by us, transport and living expenses funded by us, a £2.4million refurbishment of your house funded by us and your child is deemed important enough to be baptised by the Archbishop of Canterbury.

And in return you perform the occasional public duty and follow the royal traditions that have sustained the Monarchy for hundreds of years.

The ‘privacy please’ charade is another example where the Duke and Duchess of Sussex are blurring the lines between ‘royal’ and ‘celebrity’
AFP or licensors

One of those traditions being the inclusion of godparent names in the royal register. So omitting them from the official court circular (as happened on Monday) is bordering on the non-constitutional.

And when the tourist magnet of tradition, pomp and ceremony is pretty much all the Royal Family has left as a bargaining chip with the already hard-pressed taxpayers who fund them, that’s a bold, some might say reckless, move.

A recent poll asked, “do the Sussexes have the right to keep godparents’ names secret”, and 35 per cent said “yes”, 22 per cent “no”, and 43 per cent “don’t know”.

Don’t know, or don’t care? And therein lies the rub. The impeccably dutiful Queen is hugely respected but, after she dies, what then?

The public may well feel that Harry, Meghan et al can have all the privacy they desire. But in return, they must give up all the royal trappings and pay their own bills.

Focus on loving YOU Amy

TELLY regulator Ofcom has received 196 complaints from people concerned about the “mental health” of Love Island contestant Amy Hart after she was dumped by “half-boyfriend” (don’t laugh) Curtis Pritchard.

Sigh. With everything going on in the world that’s truly worthy of complaint, how depressing that the type of “boy dumps girl” (or vice versa) scenario that’s played out daily in homes, bars, schools, parks and cafes the world over is deemed to be a matter worthy of investigation.

Rex Features

Ofcom receives nearly 200 complaints about people concerned about Love Island contestant Amy Hart[/caption]

Yes, Amy was “heartbroken” and had a good sob. But anxiety is a “mental health” issue. So is depression, bi polar disorder, schizophrenia, etc etc.

Feeling upset because someone you met three weeks ago has placed you back in the “friend zone” is not the same thing.

Equally, Amy – who has now voluntarily left the villa – willingly signed up for a reality show where she knew full well that relationships are constantly tested and the ensuing responses filmed 24/7.

A bit of heartbreak is all part of life’s rich pattern, isn’t it? You feel awful for a few hours, days or weeks (depending on how long the relationship was), then tell yourself that he/she “isn’t worth it”, change out of your pyjamas and move on.

Worryingly, Amy said Curtis had robbed her of her future. No Amy – you are your future, and anyone who comes along to share it with you is merely a bonus.

Work on loving yourself and before long it will be: “Curtis, who?”

Rex Features

Amy needs to work on loving herself — her future is in her hands[/caption]

I’m set for my escape

THE number of pensioners wanting to flat-share has soared 2,000 per cent in the past decade.

If The Bloke ever trips and falls under a bus (or I push him) I will hopefully be one of them.

Getty – Contributor

More pensioners are wanting to flat-share, well I’m all set too[/caption]

My friends and I often muse that, one day, we’ll sell our current homes and pool resources to buy a large property that we’d name “Symbiosis House”.

There, we would watch Escape To The Chateau, play Scrabble and backgammon, drink buckets of rose and look after each other by bringing our own set of skills to the late life party – be it cookery, gardening, administration or entertainment.

We would have company when we needed it, but our own room to retreat to when we didn’t.

And best of all, none of us would ever feel lonely.

Gove and Cameron feud sees its end

MICHAEL GOVE and David Cameron have reportedly ended their three- year feud with drinks at an exclusive private members’ club in London.

Whether their once-friendly wives feel the same way remains to be seen.

Heroes care is priority

AS a patron of Help For Heroes, I can’t stress highly enough how important it is to support our Forces veterans.

When we needed them, they put their lives on the line for us.

London News Pictures

I can’t stress how important it is to support our Forces veterans[/caption]

And now they are the ones in need of help, this country must look after them. Who could argue against that?

Yet despite the ongoing physical and hidden injuries (PTSD) all too many of them suffer, successive governments have failed to come up with a cohesive plan that actually delivers the right care for their needs.

So The Sun’s campaign for a small, dedicated “Office Of Veterans’ Affairs” in the Cabinet Office is a vitally important one that could make a vast difference to the lives of, among so many others, soldiers such as Ben Parkinson, 35, who suffered life-changing

injuries in Afghanistan and now needs constant care. The next PM should put it at the top of his to-do list.

At least Paxman was paid to hear politicians wittering

JEREMY PAXMAN says he doesn’t miss presenting Newsnight because: “I spent 25 years listening to people talk b*****ks every night. That was enough.”

Getty – Contributor

Jeremy Paxman says he doesn’t miss presenting Newsnight because he felt 25 years was ‘enough’[/caption]

At least he was paid to hear politicians etc wittering on. The rest of us have to pay for the, er, privilege in the form of the £154.50 licence fee.

Show the high street some love

“GOING in to town” was a big thing when I was in my late teens.

We frequented the local pubs, spent hours in Chelsea Girl looking for the perfect jeans and gathered in cafes for gossipy chats over an exciting new drink called “cappuccino”.

MP Jake Berry has said middle-aged Brits are abandoning local shops and urges us to ‘show the high street some love’

Now, according to high streets minister Jake Berry, middle-aged Brits like me are abandoning local shops because we’re either too busy working or engrossed in TV box sets.

So he’s issued a plea for us to, “show the high street some love”.

Hmmm. Might I humbly suggest that sky-high business rates, greedy parking fees and over-zealous traffic wardens might be the bigger problem?


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