It has only been eight days since the last Coronation, and already plans are being drawn up for Prince William’s own big day—which, hopefully, isn’t for at least another 15 to 20 years. As is the nature of the royal family, though, planning in advance—and we mean far in advance—is the name of the game, and The Mirror reports that the current Prince of Wales’ Coronation will be anchored by the words “modern” and “relevant.”
Though his father King Charles adapted the ceremony for 2023—it was shorter, sooner, and smaller than his mother Queen Elizabeth’s 70 years ago in 1953, for example—there were still many pieces of the 1,000-year-old ceremony left in (and some will still remain for William’s, when it is time). One that won’t make the cut, according to the outlet? The “homage of the people,” which The Mirror reports that, upon reflection, William will likely leave out. (If you’ll remember, this is when the Archbishop of Canterbury invited the congregation at Westminster Abbey—and those watching from around the world—to swear their allegiance to the King and his “heirs and successors,” inviting “those who wish to offer their support to do so.”)
“There is no way he will go down that route or anything like it,” a source close to William said. “He is really thinking, how do we make his Coronation feel most relevant in the future? He is mindful of the fact that in 20 years’ time, or whenever his time comes, how can the Coronation be modern but also unifying to the nation and the Commonwealth? I think his Coronation will look and feel quite different.”
William is opting to not have an investiture as Prince of Wales, as his father once did himself in 1969. This may be telling as to how he plots his Coronation, the source continued: “You can see it in how he has taken having an investiture off the table, and his thinking on how to leave a legacy in communities rather than just going in [to] do ribbon cutting,” the insider said. “You can see it in how he is running an environmental prize with Earthshot that is not just about handing cash out, but about the long-term impact globally. He is thinking about his Coronation in the same way.”
William himself, in an interview with the BBC to mark Her late Majesty’s ninetieth birthday in 2016, said modernizing the monarchy was on his mind. “It occupies a lot of my thinking space as to how on earth you’d develop into something modern in today’s world,” he said. “I think the royal family has to modernize and develop as it goes along, and it has to stay relevant. That’s the challenge for me—how do I make the royal family relevant in the next 20 years’ time?”
From 1953 to 2023, the King only took eight months to plan his Coronation, as opposed to 16 months for Her late Majesty’s to come to pass. The guest list was cut from 8,000 at the Queen’s to 2,300 at the King’s and was about half the length of the Queen’s three-hour ceremony. It also broke with tradition by including leaders from other religions and Christian denominations.
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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.
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