Prince William didn’t attend BAFTAs because of ‘prior commitments’

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Why are there so many conspiracies surrounding Prince William and Duchess Kate’s flight back to England after their luxury vacation in Mustique? Some say Will and Kate flew out of Mustique last Friday, some say they didn’t fly back until Sunday or Monday of this week. It wouldn’t be so tricky if William wasn’t the president of BAFTA, and it wouldn’t be so notable if William hadn’t skipped out on ALL of the BAFTA celebrations last weekend. There was even a pre-BAFTA celebration last Saturday night at Kensington Palace and there was no royal host. William didn’t attend the BAFTAs either. My theory was that William just extended his vacation through a third weekend, but the Daily Mail’s gossip guy claims William just had a “prior commitment.” WHAT?

Given that he is President of Bafta, his home Kensington Palace was used for an official party on Saturday and his Eton College classmate Eddie Redmayne was named Best Actor, Prince William might have been expected to put in an appearance at the prestigious film awards. The Duke of Cambridge’s absence from Sunday’s ceremony was, however, the talk of the Baftas.

‘A lot of people were surprised he didn’t turn up to anything or even put his head round the door at the palace on Saturday,’ says one source. ‘Part of the attraction for the Hollywood stars was the chance to meet William and Kate.’

Instead, William recorded a tribute to his predecessor as president Lord Attenborough, who died last year, with the video played to guests at the ceremony. The 32-year-old Prince attended last year’s jamboree when he presented the Bafta Fellowship Award to Dame Helen Mirren, who played his grandmother in The Queen. Like a preening actor, he posed for ‘selfies’ with admiring fans and high-fived rapper Tinie Tempah.

William returned from a luxurious two-week break in the Caribbean four days before the Baftas. He and Prince George were staying with the Duchess of Cambridge’s parents, Mike and Carole Middleton, in Mustique and he is known to be loath to disrupt his holidays with his in-laws, to whom he is very close. When William finished his six-week tour of duty as an RAF helicopter pilot in the Falklands in 2012, for example, he chose to fly to the Alps immediately for a skiing holiday with the Middletons. He did not return for the memorial service marking the 10th anniversary of the deaths of the Queen Mother and Princess Margaret, which was attended by most royals.

The Prince has not carried out a single engagement this year. He is currently three-quarters of the way through the 14 exams he must take to gain his Air Transport Pilot’s Licence, which he needs before he can take up his job as an Air Ambulance pilot in Norfolk.

A Kensington Palace spokesman tells me: ‘Sadly, the Duke was not able to attend this year due to prior commitments.’

If anyone knows what those ‘commitments’ were, please do get in touch.

[From The Daily Mail]

Wow, so much shade within just one gossip piece, right? How is it that William could have returned “four days before the BAFTAs” and we didn’t learn about their return until Monday? How is that there was a star-studded Kensington Palace reception on Saturday and William never even popped by? It would have literally taken him a minute to walk to the reception. And the official line from KP is that he had “prior commitments”???? What, he just had to see Jecca Craig?

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Photos courtesy of Fame/Flynet.

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70 Responses to “Prince William didn’t attend BAFTAs because of ‘prior commitments’”

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  1. Lilacflowers says:

    Wasn’t the BAFTA ceremony scheduled a year ago?

    • notasugarhere says:

      It was announced March 14, 2104 that the event would be February 8, 2015. Plenty of time for the president of BAFTA to schedule a return flight.

      • Lilacflowers says:

        Given that he is the president of BAFTA, I also suspect that the March 14, 2014 announcement was made only after the organizers as checked the president of BAFTA’s schedule to ascertain that the president of BAFTA would be available for the event and confirmed it with his scheduler.

      • LAK says:

        The timing of the BAFTAs depends on the Oscars. The BAFTAs are 2 weekends away from the Oscars. This has been policy for many years. As soon as the Oscars announce their dates for the following year’s ceremony, the BAFTAs follow with their dates.

        The announcement is a year ahead of time, give or take a week.

        Last year’s announcement for this year’s dates came in March because the Oscars were held in March.

        Since Royal diaries are pulled together 6mths – 1yr in advance. All the patronages submit their scheduled important dates for the diary. Any patronages’ dates that can’t be scheduled into the diary don’t go into the diary. There might be a request to move the date, but on the whole the royal’s office sends regrets for those dates. They don’t dangle an expectation that the royal might attend as William appears to have done here.

    • Someonestolemyname says:

      All of the UK and US press were touting William as attending.

      It’s a bit sad that he can’t even attend this once a year event.

      William just does what he feels like doing. Middleton’s come first with him.

  2. Snazzy says:

    I’m not usually a fan of the Daily Mail but the snark in that piece made my afternoon :)

  3. What was that says:

    I did note that this does not seem to have gone down well with anyone,at all in a prior comment.
    Princess Anne always attended to give out the fellowship award and he has disgraced himself if even the Daily Mail comments show him up
    Bit by bit this behaviour will loose him any respect and His wish not to be king will come true.The only thing is the great British public have no taste for a President,and indeed I don’t think I do either.It’s a dilemma.

    • Lou says:

      Just sack him and bring in Harry. It shouldn’t be done based on age, hire your King based on dedication to the role! :)

  4. Sixer says:

    I fear the boy threatened the press one too many times. So now we are in mock the princeling mode. We do it to all the princelings. They get wanky. We put up with it. They get wankier. We give them a slagging. They retreat from wankier back to just wanky, and we go back to putting up with them.

    It’s just the same old Brits and their royals circle jerk.

  5. wow says:

    Eh, he’s a “busy” guy. *snickers*

    No but seriously, at this point I don’t know why the press over there gets so worked up about the Cambridge’s lack of work. It doesn’t , nor will it change anything. He won’t be fired from being a “royal”. He will still become a King and she’ll still become Queen (Consort). This BAFTA blip, just as others, wont even matter in the grand scheme of things. William will keep on doing as he pleases because he can.

  6. Claire. says:

    Wild guess: he wanted to avoid the cumberbatch- fry PR stunt.

    • Lilacflowers says:

      Or something from his Eton days makes him not want to be in the same room as Eddie R and Tom H at the same time, like they might gang up on him or something.

    • sad DSA says:

      I was just about to suggest that! If it were me, I’d be a little upset to be put in such an uncomfortable position like that. Even if it wasn’t my fault I couldn’t participate in politics and most informed people understood, I’d still feel quite awkward about it. Either they were embarrassed, or they’re angry and decided to quietly boycott the thing. To be fair, it was mean/disrespectful to put them on the spot like that.

      I don’t blame him for being aloof about causes. If you knew you weren’t allowed to be actively political, you’d probably train/prim yourself to not become invested in causes too. It must really hurt to care a great deal about cause and not allowed to be ‘effective’ (not even allowed to have an opinion) about it.

      On another note, Kate’s coats in the previous post were lovely. I’d steal them if it meant I’d be banned from the country forever. LOL.

      • anne_000 says:

        He can’t be running away from uncomfortable situations and not learn to be tactful and diplomatic. If he can’t start learning now, then when? He’s over 30. He’s had years of experience doing Royal duties. It’s time.

        Anyhoo, posters here keep saying that petition thing was just a rumor.

    • notasugarhere says:

      The “sign the letter ambush” was only rumored – and by Page Six of all places. I’m not putting a lot of faith in Page Six being accurate. Charles has managed to use his passion for causes to do many great things (and some not so great). Harry is accomplishing great things with his causes. If William had passion for a certain cause, he COULD make it happen. He chooses not to.

    • Sixer says:

      @ sad DSA

      It may be that the non-attendance was fear of ambush by Fry. If it was, it is unfair to criticise. However, don’t get confused: the royals can espouse causes. In fact, they are SUPPOSED to espouse causes: that’s their job. What they CAN’T do, is interfere with or show preference for one side or another of BUSINESS BEFORE PARLIAMENT.

      They can speak up for gay rights (a cause) but they can’t advocate for particular legislation like a blanket pardon (parliamentary business). They can speak up for environmental issues (a cause) like Charles does but they can’t advocate for green taxes (parliamentary business).

      See?

      And I will add: Stephen Fry understands this perfectly well.

  7. scout says:

    He is turning into his father faster than you can say Camilla!

    • Someonestolemyname says:

      He’s worse than Charles in several areas, Charles was and is a worker bee. Charles works hard. He also speaks two or three languages enough to converse.

  8. The Original Mia says:

    Prior commitments? Like what? Sunning his dome for another day. He skipped his duties because he wanted to be on the beach. PR is going to earn his keep.

  9. notasugarhere says:

    I went to search the Court Circular. Her Tuesday event is mentioned, the rumored Monday night reception is not.

    Court Circular is run by HM’s PR staff, not the Charles or W&K offshoots. When you visit the main Court Circular explanation page there is a small photo of W&K&PGTips from the AU/NZ trip. Photo is mid-upskirt exiting the plane in the red flight attendant outfit.

    Of all the photos HM’s PR staff could have chosen, they picked that one. Little bit of snark from the grey men?

  10. LAK says:

    Poor Jecca. She’s forever tainted by association with William.

    And everyone knows ‘prior Commitments’ is palace speak for holiday.

    • ArtHistorian says:

      Didn’t they use that phrase for when they skipped the Para-Olympics for tanning in France?

      • notasugarhere says:

        From a DM article (that took care to bash Harry in the process). This article was about the Paralympics.

        “Prince Harry will attend the swimming next Monday, before visiting Paralympics GB House. He will be the only one of the three to visit the official headquarters of the Paralympic Games, compared to visits by all three during the Olympics.

        The prince may be keen to keep a low profile after the emergence of photos of him naked during a game of strip billiards at a raucous party in Las Vegas. A spokesman for the three royals said last night: ‘You cannot really compare the two events.

        ‘The duke will be back on shifts with the search and rescue team when he is not attending events and Prince Harry has long-standing military commitments.’ ‘ Prince Harry was on a period of summer leave during the Olympics which is due to come to a close very soon. ‘The duke did not have any military commitments during the first week of the Olympics.

        ‘Also, the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge will be taking time to prepare for their forthcoming overseas tour.’”

      • LAK says:

        They used it on a number of occasions when William was absent from big events or even family events only to be papped on holiday.

        Nota: the Paraolympics was the only occasion I can remember where a proper reason was given for William’s absence and then we discovered that was a lie because he was on holiday.

    • bluhare says:

      I thought it was his turn to do the dishes at Carole’s on Saturday night. Then Kate, Pippa and Carole wanted to nip down to the pub so he had to watch George. Because Maria had the night off to self flagellate before she puts on next week’s hair shirt, martyr to the job that she is. He just couldn’t do it!

  11. Elly says:

    “The Windsors are very good at working three days a week, five months of the year and making it look as though they work hard.” Quote from Mark Bolland (ex-PR guy/private secretary of Charles in the 90s – 2002).

    It was true back then and it is now, but now in the times of online magazines and social media people start to realise all the lies. Almost everyone has a smartphone, everyone tweets, makes photos and shares opinions. Gossip blogs are fast with news and photos. It´s not like in the “good old days” where the royals could stop the printing press. The future dosesn´t look good for work-shy public servants…

  12. bettyrose says:

    Eh, he’s actually not unlike multitudes of other public servants occupying jobs they can’t be fired from, in regards to his work ethic.

  13. chaine says:

    He must be so envious of all of his wealthy friends, who can live a life of luxurious laziness without any expectation that they pay regular visits to charities and mix graciously with the hoi polloi at events. I bet they razz him about his royal “duties.”

    • notasugarhere says:

      I think he doesn’t understand that many of them work. When William comes calling, the few that still like him drop everything to entertain the spoiled prince for a few days. They go hunting, to the pub, live the traditional “English Country Life” etc.

      William leaves after a few days thinking, “They live a good life. I want that.” Meanwhile, they go back to their jobs in the city and earn a living. Or they return to their attempts to keep these estates afloat through tourism, fishing, local fairs, paying hunting parties, etc.

    • bettyrose says:

      Ironically most of them probably attended BAFTA galas.

  14. Jaded says:

    William is a cocktail shaker full of issues. Start with a large splash of “parental marital discord”. Add a dash of “media manipulating by highly strung mother”. To that mix in a few tablespoons of “mummy loves you best”; “daddy is a horrible person” and “Camilla is evil”. Then top it off with “mother’s untimely death with Muslim lover” and “daddy creates cossetted life at uni away from press”. Shake it all up and you get a suspicious, selfish, tempermental and obstinate young man who feels entitled to do whatever he wants, whenever he wants, with whomever he wants.

    Because he missed out on a “normal” family life he is naturally attracted to the Middleton family with its close, loving relationships. It gives him a sense of stability and “belonging” he never had. However that’s not reason enough to behave in such an obviously petulant and irresponsible manner. I can’t imagine what an embarrassment he’s going to be in years to come as his royal duties escalate and, by extension, Kate’s, unless he gets his hard head around the fact that he’s there to do a job, not scoff at his responsibilities and hive off on vacation whenever the mood strikes him.

    • Chrissy says:

      Well said, Jaded.

    • notasugarhere says:

      How do we explain why Harry (same parental issues, not mummy’s favorite, constantly referred to as the spare, told he isn’t his father son, etc.) is doing a much better job overall at this point?

      • Jaded says:

        Harry’s a completely different personality type. Diana used to say that Harry should have been first born as William just didn’t have the personality to be King. William takes much more after his father – arrogant, moody, self-pitying, whereas Harry takes after his mother. He’s charismatic, interested in people’s issues and willing to take on a very public role to help with organizations dear to his heart, i.e. Sentebale, UNICEF, Walking with the Wounded, Help for Heroes, etc. etc. His work ethic runs circles around William’s.

      • Shazzy says:

        Jaded – that is the best, most concise description of the two of them I have seen.

      • Feeshalori says:

        I’ve often wondered if the roles were reversed and Harry born first, if he would have developed those characteristics and personality of William and William Harry’s. One wonders if it is the personalities and traits of the first- and second-born or the personality of the individual person and how he handles adversity, trauma and responsibility irregardless of birth order. Certainly being second born would give Harry less pressure and more freedom to perform in his role and more of a happy-go-lucky personality. I guess we’ll never know, but I’ll say one thing for sure – when you’ve got charisma, it doesn’t make any difference what order you’re born. Harry’s got it in spades.

      • burnsie says:

        Feeshalori, I’ve always wondered the same exact thing!

      • ArtHistorian says:

        Jaded,

        If Diana herself was aware of the problems her son had with acception the role he is to inherit then why did she voice the opinion in the TV interview that Charles should be bypassed for king in favour of her son whom she knew was so uncomfortable with his future role? It looks to me that her desire to spite Charles won out over the need to be a good parent, and I certainly judge her for that. She did a lot of good work with her charities but she was by no means a saint as so many people like to remember her as.

      • Jaded says:

        @ArtHistorian – I totally agree. She was deep into her “must destroy Charles” mode at that time, and William’s unsuitability for the future role of monarch clearly got swept under the carpet in her one-track-mindedness to get the press and media on her side in the War of the Wales’s.

      • notasugarhere says:

        Jaded, I agree with the others. That was a great summation of their differences. When they were little and William would say, “I don’t want to be king” Harry would pipe up and say, “I’ll be king!”. Was it the younger sibling wanting what the other had by default, or an innate sense of duty that shows up now?

        I wonder if Harry knows why he does these things. I read that Diana taught Harry that his job was to support his older brother no matter what. What will Harry do if William keeps getting worse and Harry’s sense of duty requires him to keep trying to make things better? Will he sacrifice his charities for his brother, or his brother for his charities?

        The transcript of that interview paints an interesting picture. What she says is not that damning at first. Charles is torn because he can accomplish more while he has the freedom of Prince of Wales, she wants his peace of mind and isn’t sure he can adapt. Then she throws him under the bus.

  15. anne_000 says:

    I want to know what Princess Anne really thinks about what William did (or didn’t do in this case). Didn’t I read that she was the Royal patron for the BAFTA or something like that and that she diligently showed up for their important events?

    I wouldn’t be surprised if William stepped down from being the president before next year’s events.

    Btw, loved reading this DM article excerpt. Was very fun.

    • Lisa Danielle says:

      I’d like to now Princess Anne’s thoughts on EVERYONE (and everything). More than the Queen even I wish I could just listen in on Anne complaining about other people.

    • What was that says:

      Yes indeed ,as I mentioned above I always watched the Bafta’s and every year Anne would show up in some very low key dress ,sometimes a speech but always presented the fellowship award
      I don’t know why she gave it up,probably some horse trading !! Ho HO!! So that William could get a taste of the job with some glamour attached and she would concentrate on the thing she loves best which is her horses!!.Apparently she does more than any other royal in attendance ,though not a great fan of hers as she takes after her father .
      He has squandered this opportunity to make some friends ,if he cared about the charities he is the patron of.
      I doubt this years fellowship winner is bothered about not meeting William as it was Mike Leigh ,and was happy with the 2 ladies who gave him the award

      • ArtHistorian says:

        I doubt that Mike Leigh has any use for royalty at all, considering the social realist bent of his work! BTW, it was Imelda Staunton and Sally Hawkins who presented him with the award, two actresses that have worked with him numerous times.

  16. Flower says:

    This is relatively small potatoes compared to the other royal story of the day which just slipped through the cracks ……..(from the DM)

    “Prince Andrew is to be promoted to the naval rank of Vice Admiral just weeks after he became mired in a teenage sex slave scandal.

    The Queen has approved the appointment, which is timed to mark her second son’s 55th birthday next week.

    Buckingham Palace last night said the move was a ‘long-standing convention’ that enables Andrew, who served as a Sea King pilot with the Royal Navy in the Falklands War, to be promoted in line with peers still serving in the military”

    …. so basically, even though he retired from the navy decades ago Andrew still gets promoted because someone he served with in the Falklands is now a Vice Admiral and he also gets the same pension rights, just because he is the Queens son.

    I think the Queen must be going gaga in her old age, I never thought I’d see it in my life time but the end of the Monarchy is pretty much a forgone conclusion within a couple of decades if they go on like this …they just never seem to get a clue at all do they?

    • ArtHistorian says:

      *facepalm*
      The BRF do seem particularly clueless – maybe because they, especially the Queen, seem to reside in a cosy little time-pocket where it is still the 1950s.

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  18. Katie says:

    William has got to be the stupidest man in the BRF’s history. This is a man who was beloved and protected by his WHOLE COUNTRY. They loved him from birth, and felt that he was their own; add his mother’s overwhelming popularity and the fact that he strongly resembled her, and he was golden. Now add to that the fact this this wonderful, hugely popular princess died so young, leaving this poor boy motherless, and you’ve got something that few other royals have: sympathy. William has been afforded so much sympathy and adulation because of his mum, but it’s running out rapidly because of his poor behaviour. It’s like he thought that that particular brand of goodwill would last forever because he’s Diana’s boy. He’s less than a decade to 40 and he’s done nothing; he bahaves like a 19 year-old trying to figure out what he wants to be when he finishes school. Someone needs to have words with him, because he’s digging himself a very deep whole that he won’t be able to climb out of.