Prince William Admits “It’s Hard Sometimes” for People to See the Point of the Royal Family

“We’re all very busy and I think it’s hard sometimes to see what the family bring and what we do.”

Prince William with a drink in hand at a reception
(Image credit: Getty)

In a wide-ranging interview with The Sunday Times—where, among other things, he discussed speaking openly to children Prince George, Princess Charlotte, and Prince Louis about homelessness—Prince William admitted that “it’s hard sometimes” for many people to see the point, purpose, and value of the royal family.

The death of Her late Majesty—who served for a record-breaking 70 years on the throne—brought up numerous questions about the validity of the monarchy and its role going forward. Meanwhile, drama continues to rage, specifically surrounding Prince Harry, which doesn’t do much to add to the “what’s the point?” conversation of the royal family.

William said that he understands how the work the Firm does may be forgotten: “But the amount of causes, the interests, the dinners, the meetings, the visits, whatever it is, that we do day in, day out, throughout the year, we’ve always been involved in that,” he said. “It’s part of what we do.”

He added “We’re all very busy and I think it’s hard sometimes to see what the family bring and what we do.”

King Charles and Queen Camilla on a visit to Northern Ireland

(Image credit: Getty)

With King Charles now on the throne, there is a slimmed-down monarchy in place, evidenced on how few people were on the Buckingham Palace balcony for yesterday’s Trooping the Colour. William, his wife Princess Kate, and their three children joined the King and Queen Camilla; alongside them, only Princess Anne and her husband, Timothy Laurence, and Prince Edward and Duchess Sophie were present—a tiny crowd compared to the packed balconies of yesteryear. 

King Charles and the rest of the royal family on the Buckingham Palace balcony for Trooping the Colour

(Image credit: Getty)

William is now first in line to the throne and has taken on a number of causes close to his heart with his royal work, one being homelessness—an issue also important to Princess Diana, his late mother who died in a car accident in 1997.

To experience homelessness firsthand, William opened up about spending a night “sleeping rough” near a London tube station 14 years ago. He was joined by Centerpoint CEO Seyi Obakin, and Obakin said he was impressed with how William fared during the experience. When both walked back to the charity’s headquarters at dawn, William admitted he was “very uncomfortable,” but Obakin said the Prince of Wales fared “much better than me.”

“It’s trying to spotlight other causes, other people, other interests, and help people where we can,” William said. “We’ll continue to do that.”

Rachel Burchfield
Senior Celebrity and Royals Editor

Rachel Burchfield is a writer, editor, and podcaster whose primary interests are fashion and beauty, society and culture, and, most especially, the British Royal Family and other royal families around the world. She serves as Marie Claire’s Senior Celebrity and Royals Editor and has also contributed to publications like Allure, Cosmopolitan, Elle, Glamour, Harper’s Bazaar, InStyle, People, Vanity Fair, Vogue, and W, among others. Before taking on her current role with Marie Claire, Rachel served as its Weekend Editor and later Royals Editor. She is the cohost of Podcast Royal, a show that was named a top five royal podcast by The New York Times. A voracious reader and lover of books, Rachel also hosts I’d Rather Be Reading, which spotlights the best current nonfiction books hitting the market and interviews the authors of them. Rachel frequently appears as a media commentator, and she or her work has appeared on outlets like NBC’s Today Show, ABC’s Good Morning America, CNN, and more.