Prince Charles wants us to know that his relationship with his father was not ‘strained’


Prince Charles had a difficult relationship with both his father and his mother. Only his grandmother, the Queen Mum, seemed to really “understand” him, and then Lord Mountbatten certainly took over as the pivotal father figure in Charles’ life. Following the Diana years, it is my impression that Charles became a lot closer to both of his parents. That might just be Charles’ PR, but it did seem like Charles still checked in with his father about family issues, and Charles has basically taken over as Regent in everything but name. They haven’t said whether Charles was there, inside Windsor Castle, when his father passed away. It’s believed that he was called to Windsor Friday morning:

Prince Charles, the heir to the throne, was seen leaving Windsor Castle hours after the news of his father’s passing. The Prince of Wales, 72, drove from his Highgrove Estate in Gloucestershire to the 94-year-old monarch’s Berkshire residence ahead of the public announcement of the duke’s passing. Sitting in the front passenger seat of a silver Tesla, the prince looked on as he pulled away. It is not known whether Camilla, Duchess of Cornwall, had accompanied him on what is their 16th wedding anniversary.

A source close to Charles said he was ‘comforted’ by the fact he and his father had been in touch more regularly than ever in recent weeks and months – and that they ‘had said all the things that needed to be said’. The source said: ‘It is some small comfort today that the prince was in much more regular contact with his father in recent weeks and months than he otherwise might have been. He was the only family member who was able to visit him in hospital and he was at Windsor as recently as the week before last. They spoke a great deal.’

Friends were at pains to point out that the relationship between father and son was also warmer than it had ever been. One said: ‘The idea that their relationship was strained, certainly in recent years, couldn’t have been further from the truth. And that’s an important thing to remember in all that is being written. There was genuine love, affection and understanding there. Which is all anyone holds dear at the end.’

[From The Daily Mail]

I remember in 2019, Charles went to Wood Farm (in Sandringham) for a big discussion with his father about… Prince Andrew. The Queen’s favorite child. I believe Charles sought his father’s permission to pressure Andrew to resign from royal duties, which happened shortly after the Wood Farm meeting. I was surprised that Charles still consulted his dad about those kinds of things, because Philip not only resigned from public life, he also resigned from his role as family-enforcer. He just wanted to live the rest of his days peacefully at Wood Farm.

The UK Royal family visit the Chelsea Flower Show

Charles also released this video about his father this weekend:

Photos courtesy of WENN, Avalon Red and Backgrid.

You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed.

63 Responses to “Prince Charles wants us to know that his relationship with his father was not ‘strained’”

Comments are Closed

We close comments on older posts to fight comment spam.

  1. equality says:

    Sophie and Edward were spotted leaving after visiting the Queen and Charles has been in touch. I can’t believe that Will didn’t make sure to be spotted or let it be known he and Kate were being the Queen’s “main support”. Has somebody gagged W&K and the Middletons?

    • Sofia says:

      Yeah it’s been pretty quiet on KP’s end now. Either they’ve realised that it’s a good idea to shut up now or they’ve been made to shut up.

    • notasugarhere says:

      They don’t have a convenient place to stay at Windsor AND pretend to be abiding by any kind of lockdown restrictions. If they are at Sandringham (him at the main house or Wood Farm, Kate at Anmer)? They are hours away from Windsor.

      I’m not expecting the kids to be trotted out as a PR exercise right now, because the Queen won’t want them at the funeral. W&K and their massive divided household(s) will have to decide if they’re all moving to London for the next week, to be closer to Windsor, or if they’re staying in Norfolk with W&K only flying in for the funeral.

      • Nic919 says:

        Since the kids are in school shouldn’t they be at KP? If so that is fairly close to Windsor castle for a visit.

      • notasugarhere says:

        Are they in school or are they still having the nannies school them at home in Norfolk? W&K refused to return their daughter to school last spring when govt regs told them too, so I’m not sure where they are now. We keep getting W&K zooming from Sandringham, not Apartment 1A at KP.

      • Lorelei says:

        William and Kate could have gone to visit the Queen if they really wanted to. They have scores of drivers, PLUS access to a helicopter if necessary. Windsor Castle is enormous and I’m sure they could be accommodated. And if they did go by helicopter, they wouldn’t even need to stay.

        I don’t know why William didn’t make a point of being seen arriving or leaving his grandmother’s residence, but it’s not because he couldn’t make it happen because of logistics.

        It’s irrelevant where the kids are because they seem to be with Maria most of the time anyway. And Carole would jump at the chance to pitch in during this rough week for the royals.

    • anotherlily says:

      I think they’ve been gagged. We’ve had a year of Cambridge PR promoting the idea of William as a leader. He was going to lead the royal family and the nation through the pandemic and emerge as a statesman on the world stage. Instead he’s emerged as an arrogant Covidiot ignoring the lockdown rules in order to bestow his charmless presence on the nation.

      Philip’s passing has brought a reality check. The hierarchy within the family is not the same as the line of succession. All the Queen’s children come before the grandchildren. So we’ve heard from each of them and especially from Charles who now speaks for his mother and for the family as a whole. Peter Phillips is the eldest grandchild and he has been to visit the Queen along with his mother and her husband. If the great-grandchildren are to be represented at the funeral Savannah Phillips is the eldest.

      With just 30 places available it may be that not all the spouses can attend. I’d expect Camilla, Sophie and Tim Lawrence to be there but possibly not Mike Tindall or Kate or Beatrice and Eugenie’s husbands. The Gloucester and Kent cousins will possibly be included and Philip has cousins in Germany and Denmark who he maintained contact with. There will also be personal friends.

      • Sofia says:

        I doubt Kate will miss the funeral.

      • Tessa says:

        Will would INSIST she be there.

      • Merricat says:

        Sofia, I’m sure she had a spring coat made for the occasion.

      • notasugarhere says:

        They’re limited to 30 people, so foreign relations or personal friends are unlikely. Kate will be there, but I could see spouses for others (Beatrice, Eugenie, Zara, Lady Sarah) being absent.

      • Nic919 says:

        Kate will definitely be there with a new black outfit. After all her recent military cosplay outfits would be even more ridiculous for the funeral.

      • notasugarhere says:

        Cosplaying a Diana outfit perhaps?

    • Farfromreality says:

      I saw an article in US or People talking about how the Middletons were gonna be Will’s rock etc. I think the embiggening continues.

  2. Digital Unicorn says:

    They were very different personalities and yes am sure that they had their issues but at the end of the day am sure they loved each other.

    They had very different parenting styles – Philip was very much a disciplinarian, Chuck not so much. You just need to look at Baldimort to see how that turned out. Charles is very much like his mother, hands off and head in the sand when it came to dealing with bad behaviour from their children.

    • I agree as to Charles’ parenting style, DIGITALUNICORN…..definitely hands off and head in the sand. As KAISER brought up the 2019 meeting, I will also mention that Charles made a big deal of letting everyone know he went straight from the airport to Wood Farm to consult with Prince Phillip about Andrew. (Remember Charles was out of area when Andrew’s interview aired.). He made sure to make it known he had cleared his schedule to spend 2 days consulting with his father on the issue. What leaked however, was that he was barely there for 2 hours and the “consultation was accromonious in the extreme. Charles of course said the meeting went well and he was suddenly unable after all to stay. (I just happened to pull several old articles about this yesterday.). So, now Charles wants everyone to know he and his dad were tight. I hope so. But the fact that he has to tell us it was so, makes me wonder quite frankly. Is he — as always —- rewriting his own history.

      • Digital Unicorn says:

        Everyone in that family rewrites their history – nothing new there.

        It’s always been a highly dysfunctional family but no on stepped out of line when Philip was in full health – esp his own children. At some point he lost the will/interest to deal with the family drama and it all went down hill from there. We also shouldn’t forget the influence The Queen Mother had over TQ’s family – she was not a particularly nice woman who seemed to have passed on her own dysfunction onto the future generations of that family.

        I also recall reading something years ago that TQ’s parents didn’t really like Philip and didn’t want her to marry him but she persisted and her father relented. It would be interesting to understand Philip and The Queen Mother’s relationship more.

      • notasugarhere says:

        Queen Mum eventually came to accept him as the man of the family, the one who was in charge behind the scenes.

        Her choice of consort was always going to be a political issue. There was concern that if she married a wealthy UK aristocrat, there would be difficulties if any policies were seen to benefit him and his wealth. Marrying a foreign royal was a less risky choice, even with his complicated background.

    • GINEVRA says:

      Prince Philip and Queen Elizabeth were absentee parents for the most important periods of Charle’s life. His mother was gone for very long periods at a time to be beside Prince Philip leaving him to be raised by nannies and his grandmother. Earl Mountbatten was Charles’ surrogate father..

      • notasugarhere says:

        She didn’t abandon her children for years on end. She *visited* Malta four times in two years, for a total of a few months over those two years. You can find the exact dates in a Malta newspaper article about her visits through the years, published during the Jubilee.

      • Tessa says:

        The time she spent at Malta was overstated. She did not spend an entire stretch of years there. The Malta story was used to try to “excuse” why Kate was not working much since Will and Kate needed to have their “Malta years.” The Queen was constantly busy and spent time in London before and after the births of Charles and Anne. She worked for her ailing father and she and Philip went on tours.

    • tcbc says:

      Phil was an abusive parents (mentally if not physically) and he and Liz were also distant and emotionally unavailable to their children except maybe towards their favorites. (And look how Liz’s favoritism turned out with Andrew.)

      All of them failed their children. And then those children went on to fail their own children. If George and company turn out not evil it will all be down to the meddling Middletons.

      Hopefully Meghan and Harry can break the cycle. But abuse scars generations, and it won’t be easy.

      • Haylie says:

        You think the Middletons will save the Cambridge kids from mean girl tactics and abusive behaviors?

        I sure don’t. They raised noted Karens Kate and Pippa. That’s before you get to Carole Jenner’s sideways comments re: Meghan and Harry. Let’s not forget Uncle Junkie.

        Combine that influence with TOB and these kids are likely to be spooked, mean and entitled when they grow up. They aren’t surrounded by goodness.

      • Nic919 says:

        Carole and Mike aren’t actually good parents. They pimped out their daughters to the highest bidder and their son can’t keep a business despite having multiple chances. Kate has no known female friends as an adult and she’s on video mean girling Meghan and that is after she put a false story about Meghan to vilify her in the UK media taking advantage of the inherent structural racism.

        The Cambridge kids don’t have functional parents and so let’s hope nanny Maria has the most influence on them because the rest of the adults in their life are immature and massively dysfunctional.

    • Tessa says:

      Charles overly cocooned William even apologizing for him after William trespassed on a neighbor’s property speeding along in his car. Harry was thrown to the wolves. He used Harry to “score points” that he would help the “wayward son” even though William started things like Club H and so on.

    • ElleV says:

      @Digital Unicorn – totally agree.

      For the folks who doubt the sincerity of Charles/TQ/the Firm’s narrative around Philip’s loss – I think if you come from a dysfunctional family, it’s easier to understand how you can both deeply love and mourn someone despite immense personal friction, frustration, disappointment, and distance. Fractious relationships also mellow as you get older and let go of what your family can’t give.

      I agree Philip and Liz failed their kids, and their kids failed the grandkids, etc. but it seems pretty normal to me that multiple narratives of a difficult relationship can be true at the same time

    • PrincessK says:

      Exactly Digital Unicorn. Charles is like the Queen burying his head in the sand. The reason why Harry is so upset that his father allowed him to be thrown under the bus by William.

  3. MsDiMeanOur says:

    Very off topic
    William looks so much like Edward from this pic
    And i always thought he was 100% Spencer. Woah. The Windsor genes are strong

    • notasugarhere says:

      Edward and William look like brothers to me, not uncle and nephew.

      • Cait says:

        Yes!! Resemblance gets stronger as Willy gets older.

      • (The OG) Jan90067 says:

        I think the only real “resemblance” btwn them is the bald head. IMO (of course) William looks *so* much like Diana’s father, Johnnie.

      • notasugarhere says:

        I’ve never seen Johnny Spencer in William. To me, Edward and William have the same unfortunate head shape, face shape, weak chin, fivehead, and teeth-baring ‘smile’.

    • PrincessK says:

      Edward has a much much kinder face than William and so l just cannot see the physical resemblance. I imagine the two of them to be poles apart in character too.

    • Golly Gee says:

      Even more off-topic, I thought male baldness, or not, was based on the amount of hair had by their grandfather on their mother’s side. But looking at that top picture, all three of the queen’s sons have varying amounts of hair.

  4. Amy Bee says:

    Charles is using his father’s death to bolster his image. Plain and simple. And it is funny that at the same time he got closer with his father he distanced himself from his youngest son.

  5. TheOriginalMia says:

    Charles has been open about his parents. No need to sugarcoat. But you could see in recent years a genuine affection between all of them. Age and life does that. Charles may have a better undefined of younger Phillip from his own life experiences. Charles was the only child to visit him in the hospital. I don’t see this as press. I see this as a son attempting to honor his father when they had a long and complicated, but ultimately loving relationship.

    • tcbc says:

      He may have been the only one allowed, because he’s the future king, to flout COVID rules. Phil probably would have preferred to see Anne.

      • notasugarhere says:

        Anne wasn’t his fav, Edward was. Anne was too much like Philip to be his closest child. Edward was the baby, like Philip, the child he could lavish attention on once he had come to terms with his consort role.

    • notasugarhere says:

      Most of Charles’s work comes from following Philip’s ideas. They were alike in many ways, from their secret emotionality to their sense of duty and love of painting.

    • Tessa says:

      Probably the other children were not allowed but spoke to him via skype or phone.

    • Betsy says:

      That’s really beautifully put.

      And who among us would like to have our worst moments frozen in time and referred to endlessly in the most cynical ways possible in our moments of grief?

    • Golly Gee says:

      Exactly. The way when feels about one’s parents is not rigid and everlasting. Time, experience and an acceptance of their imperfection can change one’s perspective, as can a growing awareness of, and coming to terms with one’s own flaws.

  6. Cait says:

    Oh lord we don’t care.
    There’s been waaaay too much coverage on this death where I am.
    Including disgraceful articles painting racist views as ‘gaffes’.
    But most of all, Charlie we don’t care about your daddy issues.

    • Carty says:

      Well said. Just because Charles was closer to his father in his twilight years, doesn’t make up for the fact he’s failed his sons.

    • Emily_C says:

      The amount of fluffing up Philip has been gross. He wasn’t a horribly evil man, but he was hardly a shining light of goodness either. He was a man of his time and of his class. I don’t think it honors someone to pretend they were something they were not.

  7. Celia456 says:

    The top photo is so weird to me. A family portrait where no one’s touching or even seems aware of the other people in the room. Kinda symbolic of that family’s dysfunction.

    ETA: I like TQ’s shoes 💃🏼

  8. Michael says:

    Seems very strange to call a 72 year old man “Prince.” This family is wretched and seems super dysfunctional.

  9. BeanieBean says:

    Two random things about that video: Charles has a lovely speaking voice. The sound of the traffic surprised me. I figured these royal people with all their money & land would be able to get away from what the rest of us have to live with–the sound of traffic.

    • Tessa says:

      I give Charles credit to making sure he worked on his public speaking skills. He did theatre work at University. Unlike his son Will who never seemed to try to improve his speech.

    • Betsy says:

      He really does have a nice speaking voice and that’s a lovely little speech to give.

      • PrincessK says:

        Charles has a wonderful delivery when it comes to speeches. William totally lacks his gravitas. Harry has inherited Charles baritone and l believe that he is going to develop into a wonderful speaker as with his new freedom he will be doing more public speaking, something William was trying to curb to prevent Harry becoming even more popular.

    • anotherlily says:

      He was speaking from Clarence House which is in central London near The Mall and Buckingham Palace. If you find it on Google Earth you can see inside Clarence House and move around the rooms and through the door into the garden where he was speaking.

    • anotherlily says:


  10. A says:

    -sigh- There’s really no need for this. None at all. This is, again, the mistake the RF makes constantly. Windmilling their arms around, insisting that there’s nothing to see here, nothing at all, is just…unnecessary. The information is out there, what’s the point of saying all this?

    Why can’t Charles just say, you know, he was my father, and I loved him, but our relationship was complicated. It was complicated in the same way I’m sure it is for millions of people out there in this world. That doesn’t mean he didn’t care for me, or that I didn’t care for him. We did the best we could with what we had, and that’s all anyone can really say.

    The primary reason why no one can see Charles for the thoughtful, introspective man he fancies himself as being is bc he has zero humility and candor in his dealings with the public. When your public image is at odds with the reality, and you continue to insist otherwise, even as your audience can see the truth, what else will result except for annoyance and irritation? You have to at least give the illusion that you’re being truthful, especially with regards to your vulnerability.

    Meanwhile, everyone with eyes knows that Charles and Philip weren’t exactly close, and didn’t have a good relationship, even at the end. No need to sugar coat any of it to make yourself, or anyone else, look good.

  11. Lainey says:

    No matter who you are losing a parent is hard. I hope their family does heal.

  12. Golly Gee says:

    “ He was the only family member who was able to visit him in hospital”. This is a big fat hierachy raspberry aimed at William I’m sure.

  13. Rnot says:

    Sure… just like his relationship with his sons isn’t strained.