It’s time for another episode of The Cambridges Do The Bare Minimum And Get Praised For It: Coronavirus Edition. The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge retired to their country home, Anmer Hall, in late March. They’ve spent the lockdown there in Norfolk, and my guess is that they’ll have to spend another month or two there. Meaning, they probably haven’t been in London, at Kensington Palace, since late March and they are unlikely to be at KP until June. So in their absence, Prince William has “authorized” hospital air ambulances to land on the grounds of Kensington Palace during the pandemic. Yes. William is being praised for allowing air ambulances to land somewhere usually reserved for those royal helicopters both he and Kate love so much.
Prince William continues to shine amidst the pandemic, doing what he can to serve the NHS and the UK in the best way he can as a Royal. His latest move is no different, the Duke of Cambridge has granted permission for air ambulances to land and refuel at Kensington Palace on a patch of glass that would ordinarily be reserved for Royal Family helicopters.
It’s hoped that such a move will save lives as it means that paramedics will no longer have to waste time flying to Watford to refuel (which is the nearest fueling base). The new arrangement enables pilots to land and take off from Perks Field, a plot of grassland next to the palace, which is the London home and office of the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge.
Prince William was made patron of the London Air Ambulance Charity in March this year; a suitable appointment given his history as a former search and rescue helicopter pilot and also as a medic with the East Anglian Air Ambulance, before stepping down in 2017 to take on more Royal responsibilities. He was previously known as Flight Lieutenant Wales when he served with the RAF in Anglesey.
I have a somewhat technical question for the royalists out there: was this even William’s decision to make? Surely this was a decision by whomever is in charge of the maintenance and function of all of the royal palaces and royal grounds, which would be the Queen and HER people? I don’t doubt that William “agreed” to use the KP helipad for air ambulances, but it just feels like this was done with more than just William’s say-so. Also: it’s Peak 2020 that William is being praised for selflessly donating the helipad space which he normally uses for all of the unnecessary helicopter flights he takes because the Queen bought him a shiny new helicopter as a way to bribe him into working.
Also: we heard in March that William was “seriously considering” a return to air ambulance piloting, or in his case, co-piloting because he was never authorized to pilot air ambulances solo. He als never kept up with his accreditation, so I have still have no idea what all that was about other than “William wants credit for thinking about working!” This story feels related. We went from “he’s thinking about working” to “he donated his helipad space, how selfless!”
Photos courtesy of Backgrid.