Prince William Reportedly Urged by 'Terrified' Queen Not to Fly Choppers Amid Succession Line Fears
Queen Elizabeth II's heir apparent is her eldest son, Charles, Prince of Wales. Next in line is Prince William, Duke of Cambridge. Third is Prince George, eldest child of the Duke of Cambridge, followed by his sister and younger brother. Sixth in line is Prince Harry, who, together with his wife, Meghan Markle, retired as a senior royal last year.
Prince William, 39, has been urged by Queen Elizabeth II to stop flying helicopters with his family because she is “terrified” for their safety, reported The Sun.
The monarch has reportedly had “several conversations” with William, requesting that he “stop flying himself, particularly in bad weather” amid fears an accident could threaten the line of succession.
Prince William, Duke of Cambridge, the elder son of Charles, Prince of Wales, and Diana, Princess of Wales, has been second in the line of succession to the British throne since birth. His father, Prince Charles, is first in the line of succession.
© AFP 2022 / JANE BARLOWBritain's Prince William, Duke of Cambridge and Britain's Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge attend a Beating Retreat by The Massed Pipes and Drums of the Combined Cadet Force in Scotland at the Palace of Holyroodhouse in Edinburgh, Scotland on May 27, 2021, the final day of their week-long visit to the country
Britain's Prince William, Duke of Cambridge and Britain's Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge attend a Beating Retreat by The Massed Pipes and Drums of the Combined Cadet Force in Scotland at the Palace of Holyroodhouse in Edinburgh, Scotland on May 27, 2021, the final day of their week-long visit to the country
Senior royals are “unofficially” forbidden to fly together, however, these regulations were relaxed after Prince William sought specific permission after the birth of Prince George in 2013 for the entire family to fly together for their tour of Australia in 2014. Since then, while sometimes the family has flown together with a pilot and crew, on occasion the Duke of Cambridge has taken over at the controls.
Prince William, his wife, Kate Middleton, and their children George, 8, Charlotte, 6, and Louis, 3, regularly fly the 115 miles between their two homes: Kensington Palace in London and Anmer Court in Norfolk. George is third in the order of succession to the throne.
“Her Majesty has told close friends and courtiers that she would like William to stop flying himself, particularly in bad weather, as helicopters are not the safest form of transport. It keeps the Queen awake at night and she is understandably very worried,” a source close to the Queen was cited as saying.
The insider added that the 95-year old monarch was well-aware that Prince William is a capable pilot, who has flown with the Royal Air Force. The Queen’s grandson served as a search and rescue pilot at RAF Valley on Anglesey in North Wales, and the East Anglia Air Ambulance.
5 December 2021, 10:39 GMT
Nevertheless, the Queen reportedly didn’t think it was “worth the risk for all five of them to carry on flying together”. If an accident were to befall them, it would “spark a constitutional crisis,” the source added.
A change in the line of succession could see Prince Harry replace his Father, Prince Charles, as King, with Meghan Markle by his side. Succession would then pass to their children Archie, two, and six-month-old Lilibet.
However, the Sussexes quit royal duty to live a life of financial independence.
© AP Photo / Frank AugsteinIn this Jan. 7, 2020, file photo, Britain's Prince Harry and Meghan, Duchess of Sussex leave after visiting Canada House in London, after their recent stay in Canada
In this Jan. 7, 2020, file photo, Britain's Prince Harry and Meghan, Duchess of Sussex leave after visiting Canada House in London, after their recent stay in Canada
© AP Photo / Frank Augstein
While Buckingham Palace was left reeling by Prince Harry and Meghan Markle’s incessant “truth-bombing” in interviews, Queen Elizabeth is purportedly “delighted” with Prince William and Kate Middleton and knows the monarchy is safe in their hands.
Prince Charles is next in line to the throne followed by William, his children, then Harry and his offspring — with scandal-hit Prince Andrew at number nine.
“She thinks the future is bright with them at the helm after Charles but if something happened to him and the family it doesn't bear thinking about,” the royal insider was quoted as saying.