The CEO of Prince Charles’ foundation resigned amid cash-for-honors claims

The Prince of Wales visit to Dorset

It’s pretty curious that during a quiet, slow summer for royal gossip, there’s been a constant drip-drip of negative stories about people around Prince Charles. It was just a few weeks ago that we learned that the Duchess of Cornwall’s nephew Ben Elliott is being investigated for selling access to the royals through his position as a Conservative Party fundraiser. Then two weekends ago, we heard that Charles’s Prince’s Foundation was caught up in another cash-for-access scheme involving Dumfries House. Now yet another story, with similar cash-for-access energy. Only this one involves a man very close to Charles for decades, and what seems like cash-for-honors. The man is Michael Fawcett, CEO of the Prince’s Foundation. There’s hard evidence that Fawcett got lots of money from a Saudi businessman, and in exchange, Fawcett and Charles’ office helped the Saudi businessman get British citizenship and they pushed for a CBE or KBE honour. If you subscribe to the Times of London, you can read their story here.

Michael Fawcett, a former assistant valet to Charles, has stepped down as chief executive of the Prince’s Foundation amid claims about an honour relating to Saudi businessman Mahfouz Marei Mubarak bin Mahfouz. The Sunday Times says Mahfouz, who is listed as a supporter on the Prince’s Foundation website, donated large sums to restoration projects of particular interest to Charles, adding that Mahfouz denies any wrongdoing.

Fawcett, who in 2003 was cleared of financial misconduct allegations over the selling of royal gifts, is alleged to have coordinated support for an honour for Mahfouz. He was appointed chief executive of the Prince’s Foundation in 2018 following a reorganisation of Charles’s charities.

Douglas Connell, chair of the Prince’s Foundation, said: “Michael Fawcett offered to step down temporarily from active duties as chief executive of the Prince’s Foundation while the trustees’ investigation is ongoing. The Prince’s Foundation has accepted this offer. Michael fully supports the ongoing investigation and has confirmed that he will assist the investigation in every way.”

A spokesperson for the Prince’s Foundation said: “The Prince’s Foundation takes very seriously the allegations that have recently been brought to its attention and the matter is currently under investigation. We are incredibly proud of the Prince’s Foundation’s charitable work and the positive impact it has on our beneficiaries throughout the UK and across the world. Our education and training programmes, in particular, benefit more than 15,000 people every year, and provide our students with the skills and confidence needed to gain employment or start their own businesses.”

[From The Guardian]

Long-time royal watchers know the name Michael Fawcett because he has long had a tawdry history working for Charles in various capacities. He’s known as a racist, a bully, a schemer, and someone with his hand constantly in the till. He’s been fired and re-hired by Charles several times. He keeps turning up like a bad penny. But obviously, this isn’t just about Fawcett. This is about how Charles and his staff have always used their positions to grant favors, grease the wheels, provide access, lobby for honours, and politicize the royal office in exchange for cash. It’s pretty interesting that all of this is coming out this summer.

(I’m sure a lot of people wonder if the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge or perhaps Middleton Manor HQ are behind all of these damaging stories about Charles and his staff. My gut says no, mostly because I don’t think William and Kate are smart enough to pull off this kind of campaign against Charles. But I do wonder if some of these leaks are coming from inside the palace.)

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138 Responses to “The CEO of Prince Charles’ foundation resigned amid cash-for-honors claims”

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  1. Abby says:

    Ruh roh!

    • (TheOG) Jan90067 says:

      Just out 7:45 PST: He’s “stepping down” amidst “the controversy”.

      *Someone* is trying to do MAJOR damage control before more gets out.

  2. Becks1 says:

    These leaks are definitely coming from inside the palace. I think the anti-Camilla stories were from the Cambridges, those just had a sense of trying to reset focus or something (away from the Cambridges).

    But these stories? IDK. It’s clear though it’s something that SOMEONE has been sitting on and is now leaking. Fawcett has been questionable for a long time. Is this a power move to get rid of him from someone like Edward and Sophie? Andrew trying to make everyone look dirty?

    • Pao says:

      Maybe its simply the press yanking charles’ chain? Maybe he isn’t keeping up with his half of the invisible contract.
      Its definitely not william and kate though.

      • Becks1 says:

        @Pao – could be, esp if the press is annoyed at the lack of Sussex content lately.

        But I don’t think the Times would run a story like this just bc they’re mad at not getting any Sussex leaks. But maybe?

      • Chica says:

        I think there are multiple people at play here.

        The Cambridge’s .they can’t pull off a sustained campaign grounded in facts. They are more gossip and innuendo type shenanigans.
        Andrew? This landed in the Times with internal documents. He’s been around long and knows where the bodies are buries.

        RR? They have lots of reciepts. The Climate change article to DM of all sources was odd. There were the random and really ridiculous HM stories in the past few weeks that could not be sustained for clicks ($$$). The RR needs to feed somewhere. Absent Pics of Lilibet and HM under cover, Charles is it

      • DuchessL says:

        Will & Kate are obviously not smart enough for this scheme, but their people would easily be smarter than them and also, kate’s side could be, but no, they wouldn’t do it. The Press would be the people to blame. h&m smear reporting is coming to an end – so they need to find someone else to pick on. I associate this with the reports about how they would skip charles, and king maker katy keen, they were probably knitting us for this. They got so much tea on the Royals. Im here for it.

      • Mac says:

        The allegations against Charles’ foundation are quite specific and serious. Someone at the foundation is tired of the pay to play.

      • Amy Too says:

        I’m thinking this is possibly the press (maybe even the government) helping William to somehow skip over Charles, or make Charles’ reign very short, or possibly even mire Charles in so much scandal that everyone looks expectantly and gladly at the next King, creating some kind of wonderful anticipation for Will and Kate that is based not on their actually working or doing anything good and helpful, but just on the fact that they’re not Charles. Charles, while certainly firmly entrenched in the royal establishment, is a bit too liberal and progressive for the liking of the government and the press who are continuing further along their far right swing. William is the exact type of autocratic jerk who supports the far right power structure but who also has no real ideas, or causes, or plans of his own for the press and the conservative government. He’s also extremely lazy and entitled and would love nothing more than to be a figure head who gets the adulation of the masses while allowing anyone else around him to do the work. This seems like a world-wide trend, this right wing swing. We’ve seen how closely the royal family works with the Russians and the Saudis. Perhaps the international community would also prefer William. It might also explain why Will and Kate keep trying to happen in America. They want the support of the MAGA.

        Something about the fact that Will and Kate are thinking about setting themselves up IN Windsor castle—not just in a property at Windsor—makes me believe that they are seriously trying to make themselves seem like they are co-monarchs with Charles once the Queen dies. Once she dies, we get Will and Kate as the top family in Windsor castle and we’ve heard that Charles doesn’t want to use the same traditional castles and palaces that his mother used. He might not do buckingham palace if he can help it. And if Will and Kate set themselves up in Windsor Castle I doubt he’s going to want to come stay there as one of his primary residences just based on the fact that William will be pissy and not “allow” Charles to “come stay with them.” The Cambridges are taking over Windsor and claiming it as theirs early.

        Plus all the articles we’ve been getting for years, but which have really ramped up in the past few years about how Will and Kate are the next King and Queen, taking lessons directly from the Queen (and now going to live with her to learn more and position themselves for the next reign) while the press seem to pretend that they’re just forgetting about Charles and Camilla…. I think there’s going to be a huge push to shorten Charles’ reign. The Queen is famously known for her promise to serve until she died, her utter resistance to ever stepping down or retiring because of the abdication of her Uncle. But Charles doesn’t have that same narrative attached to him. I think they’re trying to shape the “it’s okay to retire” narrative now. “Poor Granny worked until her death and everything was falling apart in the final years: Sussexit, Andrew, no one watching over Charles to make sure he’s not a scheming jerk. We’ve learned that the work of monarch is something that one shouldn’t actually do into their 90s. For the physical, emotional, and mental health of everyone involved, and the good of the monarchy, we should start allowing our monarchs to retire around the age of 80.” There have been some really weird and uncharacteristic articles lately about how the Queen is making bad choices regarding Andrew. How she’s old and hard of hearing and didn’t actually understand enough to consent to the name Lilibet. How she must always be accompanied by a family member now because she’s so frail. That’s new. Insinuating anything about the Queen not being perfect is new.

      • Nic919 says:

        They will not skip Charles for this. William is just as dirty when it comes to money on the side (see the Cambridge foundation) and none of this directly involved Charles. This is deniable as someone gone rogue and is not at the level of Edward Windsor hanging out with traitors to the UK during an upcoming war.

        Besides if you can skip Charles then you can skip William and they will never open up that can of worms. This isn’t 1936 where society is ok with a monarch. There is a much larger group of British who want all the Windsors gone, not just Chuck.

      • PrincessK says:

        @Becks …The Times imitates the Fail on a daily basis.

      • GraceB says:

        My guess is Andrew as some sort of punishment/distraction from his own stuff or possibly the Wessex’s.

        I wonder whether even the anti-Camilla stuff is one of those two.

        I just don’t see it being The Cambridges. They don’t seem to care enough and also I think they feel like they need Charles on side.

    • Sofia says:

      Someone’s doing this but I’m not convinced it’s KP. I think it’s more that someone is trying to get rid of Fawcett rather than shame/embarrass Charles. With all these articles, the blame is put mostly at Fawcett’s feet (which I don’t fully agree with because I don’t believe Charles had no idea this wasn’t happening) so the question is: Who wants to get rid of Fawcett? Andrew? Edward? Anne? The Queen? William? The media?

    • Sunday says:

      IMO this (and the Camilla stories) are too calculated and controlled to come from camp keen – we get the “meghan wore saudi jewels! nevermind where the rest of our bling came from!! don’t look over here!!” type of stories. They’re obvious and crude. Unless something has changed and someone at KP is finally listening to a new advisor, I really don’t think it’s them.

      The Andrew possibility is interesting; we know he’s desperate and undoubtedly knows that the bulk of his protection dies with the queen, so it’s possible he’s applying pressure because ultimately he knows that Charles can’t expose him without making the queen look even worse.

      My money’s on Edward and Sophie, though – Sophie is a PR professional and this is a subtle but deadly campaign against Charles and Camilla. These are threats being played out in the press. Remember, we also know that Sophie has been playing nice with the media because we got all those stories about carriage rides with Philip and all that fluff about their daughter… actually, come to think of it maybe it’s a Sophie-keen alliance, because we also got that story about babysitting.

    • Ainsley7 says:

      I don’t know, but the Queen and her courtiers have been trying to get rid of Fawcett for years. Like, there are so many scandals around him. Every time the Queen made Charles fire him, Charles would simply hire him in a different position. Honestly, he’s the only person Charles has ever been completely loyal to.

      • Becks1 says:

        @Ainsley that’s what’s sticking out to me about this. Someone is making another move to get rid of Fawcett – why is Charles so loyal to him? Just because he knows everything? Are these stories coming from closer to the queen than we may realize, as an attempt to get rid of fawcett once and for all?

      • Pao says:

        @ainsley7. I don’t think the queen would leak something so that reflects so poorly on the heir. Yes i know the article places the blame mostly at Fawcett’s feet but most people will still connect this shady business to charles.

      • Eurydice says:

        Yes, I think it has to come from a source that’s close and high up and that would keep tabs on what Charles and his foundation are doing. I can’t see foundation people leaking to anybody lower than Charles, unless it’s someone who could be useful to them, like William

      • PrincessK says:

        I don’t think it is the Palace, l think that someone else in this honours for cash business has been made to look bad and has decided to produce evidence to show that this ‘business’ goes right to the top.

        Is Fawcett going to remain loyal yet again and save Charles?

    • Harper says:

      Will leaked the Meghan is a bully story to The Times. He told The Times that the family had reached out to Harry after Oprah. The Times gave us The Other Brother (and we are eternally grateful for the nickname). William is chipping away at Charles’ reputation and The Times is helping him by releasing some of what’s in their storehouse against Chucky. I agree that the letters and whistleblower are coming from the palace, but the incident happened a while ago so the timing is suspect.

      William has aligned himself with The Times and thus I look at the media outlet first to determine which royal is behind the story. Also, The Times was one of the only papers to slam the Spencer movie while The Guardian and Telegraph and most of Hollywood praised it. The Times is in deep with TOB, and he needs the paper to be on his side when the Kate stuff hits the fan.

      • Becks1 says:

        @Harper you raise good points about William’s connections with the Times. Wasn’t the Times also the source of the initial “ban Harry and Meghan to Africa” story and the quote about how william couldn’t put his arm around Harry anymore?

        It doesn’t seem to me that William is smart enough for this kind of smear campaign against his father, the smear campaign against Meghan was a lot messier and more obvious, but maybe the difference is that William has actual dirt on his father?

        My next question is – how long before charles fires back? How long before we get a story about the Cambridges living separate lives or something?

      • equality says:

        But is this smear campaign smart, whichever royal might be behind it? None of them seem to get that tarnishing the royal brand endangers all the freeloaders, not just the one exposed.

      • Becks1 says:

        @Equality lol well objectively, these smears and leaks are not smart. But within the universe of the royals and the backstabbing and leaking, some of the smears are smarter and more calculated than others IMO

      • Nic919 says:

        William might be supporting this but I suspect there are courtiers organizing the drip campaign. And not KP courtiers because that’s Jason Knauf and he’s an idiot. Is Geidt still able to do this? It seems like someone at his level is working this story.

      • Kalana says:

        @equality. These are people who have failed upwards their whole lives. I don’t think they can genuinely grasp that the gravy train could fully stop.

      • Debbie says:

        Would William repeatedly leak stories about Charles in the press just at the time when, I assume, he needs Charles to give him money to buy another house?

    • North of Boston says:

      There is a drip drip drip to it, with stuff coming out RE different aspects of Charles’ life: his wife and her family, his charitable fundraising, and his future ‘head of state’ role as it relates to government matters… ie selling citizenship to wealthy foreign nationals.

      So possibly someone(s) letting it be known that they don’t have dirt about one shady thing about the FK’s world, they have info on ALL the things and there is no safe quarter.

      The only thing that’s missing is a juicy *personal* scandal involving Charles and/or Camilla … it’s all about dirty dealings in his official roles.

      Maybe whoever is behind this figures that’s not the way to go since ‘C & C’ survived public knowledge of their affair, treatment of Diana etc, or the person involved has their own personally scandalous skeletons and is avoiding payback, or possibly figures the next season of The Crown will do enough damage on the personal scandal front that they don’t need to bother.

      I do wonder if this is coming from the press, or if from inside the BRF, coming from Sophie and Edward, since a) didn’t they get their wings clipped because of pay to play schemes years back? And this could be a tit for tat long game move being fired off at FKPC to warn him not to mess with them and their family and b) as bad as these accusations are they are being framed in a really dull way, which almost makes you forget about them if they are not right in front of you, which is IMO is spot on-brand for the Wessexes.

      • Ainsley7 says:

        The Wessexes need to stay in Charles’ good graces or they lose literally everything when the Queen dies. They’d never dare do something like this when they know he will be holding the purse strings. When it comes down to it, a smear campaign against Charles on this level doesn’t benefit anyone in the lower hierarchy at this point. I could see William pulling something like this once he’s POW and has independent income from Charles. Everyone else will be depending on Charles for money in the future. Andrew could be a candidate if Charles has told him that he’s going cut what Andrew receives from the Duchy of Lancaster when he is king. Then he’d have nothing left to lose.

      • Elizabeth Kerri Mahon says:

        If it is Edward and Sophie, this could be payback for those articles claiming that Charles was not going to hand over the Duke of Edinburgh title to Edward when he ascended to the throne, despite what was agreed to at the time of Edward & Sophie’s wedding.

      • Eurydice says:

        To have it come from Edward and Sophie would mean that they have inside info on how Charles’ foundation is run. And I just can’t see why a foundation insider would want to support Edward over Charles. That’s why Fawcett’s been clinging like a limpet – you want to be as close to the throne as possible.

      • Jais says:

        What if the Wessexes and Cambridges are working together? No idea if this could be the case but I mean then they could take turns leaking against Charles. Spitballing ideas here lol

      • Kalana says:

        I think it’s Andrew and even the Queen. Keep him protected and stay away from the Royal Lodge lease or everything comes out, and stop messing with the Queen’s authority. The story about the Duke of Edinburgh title showed that Charles is getting a little too big for his boots. He’s not King yet.

      • Christine says:

        Kalana, I agree with you completely. This is a shot across the bow to warn Charles, and the only person who wants to protect Andrew, even after her death is the queen.

      • Margaret says:

        I smell collusion. The wessexes and shamebridges in tandem, 1. Didn’t get the title and giving payback. 2 the other hungry for the crown, working together in a combined attack on the the heir for the mutual advantage of the two. A chess move on Charlie. Now it is his move, and he had better get moving because those two meanie are going for the kill, or in chess, checkmate. That is my take. Keep a eye on the two hungry groups, don’t underestimate them they do work together for their mutual Interest. How did they treat the sussexes?.

    • Moxylady says:

      I think it’s Andrew. Or the thirsty ones. Edward and Sophia? Like- hey! If you get rid of us… we know things. Lots of things.

    • Deputy Dot says:

      W&K couldn’t have pulled this off by themselves, but they definitely know people who could.

      Their former employee Simon Case is Cabinet Secretary and William Hague, who became chair of their Royal Foundation last year, was Foreign Secretary from 2010-2014 and Secretary of State for Wales 1995-1997. He was made a life peer in 2015.

    • Rice says:

      You’re all wrong. It’s Prince George. He’s clearing the way to be crowned so why not take down Grandpa Chuck and Dad. Andrew is just an ace in the hole.

    • Where'sMyTiara says:

      Looking forward to the Queen’s Christmas address this year where Messy Bessy of House Petty rolls up dressed as Dame Diana Rigg in Game of Thrones and simply says, “Tell Charles… I want him to know it was me.”

      OMG this whole fam is a hot mess. Did y’all see the resurfacing of the Fawcett-Prince Charles “caught in flagrante” scandal on Twitter? The valet who allegedly caught them at it died in 2005, and had credibly accused Fawcett of rape, which happened around the time that Fawcett was caught w/ Chaz. Princess Diana apparently taped a conversation where Smith, the victim, talked about it.

      Raises a couple of questions, doesn’t it? 1. Did Fawcett rape George Smith to shut him up about Fawcett & Charles’ indiscretions, and 2. Did Charles ask/order Fawcett to do that in order to ruin Smith’s credibility with a he said/he said situation? 3. What happened to Diana’s taped evidence?

  3. Lauren says:

    I agree that these leaks are too smart to come from camp Keening, but from somewhere they do come. They are too specific. I don’t think that BP is involved is as well as Chuck’s people are already in place. There is a lot more dirt where this is coming from.

  4. Snuffles says:

    Definitely from inside the palace as the letter Fawcett wrote was leaked too. I don’t think the Cambridges or the Middletons would have that much detail. I’m sure they all knew about it but not the specifics.

    But it would be a trip if this was William trying to start a coup by damning Charles reputation so much he’s forced to abdicate.

  5. Lady Digby says:

    Metro newspaper included following sentence deleted from online version regarding 2003 report on Fawcett ” as an alleged bully who accepted valuable gifts from outsiders. ”
    He later resigned but then worked as PC’s events manager and then became CE of PC Foundation in 2018 so clearly chief minion retaininghis masters full confidence.

    • Lauren says:

      Uh. That’s interesting. Is this about the “Meghan is a bully investigation”? The Firm trying to get rid of actual bullies before the investigation results go public and show that no, Meghan isn’t a bully, but the firm is surely protecting their own bullying staff. Also because it ties Chuck really close to Saudi Arabian money and earrings.

      • equality says:

        Good point. I thought maybe cleaning house before Harry’s book if they are afraid of what he might expose.

  6. Surly Gale says:

    Related to the Saudi person who purchased Andrew’s lodge for several million pounds above market value?

  7. Sofia says:

    Like I said above, I think this is more about getting rid of Fawcett rather than embarrassing Charles. While William may have his reasons (if he does), I don’t think it’s him or KP behind this.

    • Sunday says:

      I (respectfully) disagree – even in this exposé, they say that Fawcett has “temporarily” stepped down. That’s way different than actually being held accountable. As Kaiser points out, he’s been “fired” multiple times amidst various scandals and always turns up again. The stepping down/firing is just for show to make it look like it’s being handled and to make the story go away. I wouldn’t be surprised if he were still at the palace, “volunteering” his advice to Charles until the dust settles and he can pop up in some new role.

      • harla says:

        I would imagine that Fawcett is being paid while on “temporary” leave.

      • Sofia says:

        I’m aware that he’s only temporarily stepping down and has done that in the past but that doesn’t mean someone isn’t trying to make it permanent or something.

  8. Gina says:

    My first suggestion was: someone (PWT) wants to be the King now and is using his tight contacts with yellow press to speed the deed. On the second thought – there’s vipers nest there. It could be Wessexes, it could be Andrew.
    Generally speaking, the facts are not surprising but the timing is suspicious. Why now?

    • North of Boston says:

      If that’s the case (PWT trying to speed his ascendency) he hasn’t been paying attention.

      Waity Katey has nothing on Charles when it comes to hanging on for what you want.

      The ONLY way Charles skips his reign or cuts it short is if he jumps aboard Phillip’s Green Land Rover on his way to his Final Reward.

    • Pao says:

      If it is william then that is quite lite The dumbest thing he could ever do.
      1. Because it won’t change anything. His father will still be king before him. Thats how a hereditary monarchy works.
      2. Making charles look bad, will make the monarchy look bad. He would be messing with his own future

  9. Tessa says:

    Fawcett IMO is non-negotiable, he will still work for Charles.

  10. Lori says:

    Where’s Sophie been all summer? She’s been quiet and all talk of the DoE seems to have stopped. Makes me wonder how Sophie’s been keeping busy all summer. She has quietly and obediently put in 20 yrs and Charles quickly blew up her plans weeks after Philips death.

  11. Eurydice says:

    So interesting. Why would Charles protect Fawcett all these years? Is someone trying to clean house before Charles becomes King?

    • India says:

      It has been reputed for years that Charles and Fawcett are lovers.

      • Galisteo says:

        Yes, this came out during the trial after Diana died. And we recently learned Camilla only joins Charles for dinner M – Th, does not stay over, and spends the rest of the time, including weekends, at her home Ray Mill House.

      • Eurydice says:

        Well, that just made Charles 1000% more interesting to me. And it looks even more like housecleaning before Charles takes the throne.

      • dogmom says:

        OMG what? I’ve never heard this! Is Charles allegedly bi, then? Or was the whole Camilla “affair” a cover-up for a gay heir? Like Eurydice, this just became way more interesting!

      • India says:

        He’s probably bisexual. Fawcett has been his main lover for decades and has always been the one non-negotiable thing in his life. Camilla is probably relieved and loves their arrangement. I expect Charles is very tiresome to deal with and she needs a nice break.

      • Harper says:

        Rumors have also recently been swirling that Charles and Catherine FitzGerald, who is Dominic West’s wife, are “close.” The Fail had an article in June on how she helped Charles in the Highgrove gardens, and there were also recently some Twitter rumors citing dinner party gossip as well. It might be why she was so fast to do the Nothing To See Here note and photoshoot when Dominic got caught with Lily James. Not that she wanted to avoid embarrassment, but that she wanted to shut down the story fast so that no one looked closely at her and Charles.

      • Galisteo says:

        There was also the story that Charles purchased Fawcett’s home in London, in the 90s? The royals are known for being incredibly tight fisted with money, so this raised some eyebrows. The UK press were banned from printing many of the rumors, so again, even more intriguing.

      • India says:

        The RF has always slapped D Notices on anything they do not want published. Their power is so much more than anyone realizes.

  12. Layla says:

    Anyone see the articles popping up about how KP are suddenly really desperate to make their staff more diverse?

    • harla says:

      I saw the headlines but didn’t read the article. Interesting because when CH and BP released their staff diversity figures, KP refused to release theirs and of course the press said nothing about that. Imho, W&K have no people of color on their past or current staff and are scrambling to change that.

  13. Jessie Quinton says:

    I think Edward and Andy are teaming up because Charlie is threatening their places, IMO.

    • Snuffles says:

      I was just about to post something similar. Charles has made it known for decades that his plan is to “slim down the monarchy”. Which means he intends to cut off a whole lot of family members financially. Cut them out of opportunities. Stop their ability to leech off the system and their positions. Plus, Charles probably hates most of his family and they know what a duck he is and are terrified what he will do to them once he ascends to full power.

      Maybe William is telling them if HE was King be would keep everyone around and give them more of a role to play and to continue their allowances. Since William is a lazy fucker, he would want to delegate the duties that bore him.

    • Sunday says:

      100%. Between the embarrassment surrounding Edward’s claim to the Duke of Edinburgh title and Andy knowing he’s done for as soon as mum dies, the desperation is palpable. The slow drip of these financial stories are way different from the usual tabloid mudslinging we see – there’s real substance here, complete with paper trails that expose how corrupt and self-dealing the heir apparent really is. These are threats – whoever is leaking knows where the bodies are buried.

  14. Catherine says:

    I think this story is a carefully schemed distraction from the Ben Elliot, Quintessentially story. He’s Camilla nephew and a huge fundraiser for the Tory party so he has to be protected. IMO. Something beyond their control was going to come out from somewhere so they had to put something out there. Maybe the Saudi nationals citizenship didn’t come through and he’s leaking. Maybe someone in the government who doesn’t like Charles or doesn’t like the situation is leaking. Maybe it was uncovered in connection to all the info that the Guardian has been uncovering recently. Either way. Ben Elliot because of his connections could not be tainted by a scandal and they needed to get his name out of the papers. Take note of how the Ben Elliot story had just completely disappeared. Also, take note of how the tabloids are already helping Charles distance himself from the actual corruption and how they are minimizing Fawcett’s power by referring to him as a former valet (which he hasn’t been since 2003) and minimizing the fact that he has been running the foundation for years. Fawcett will remain loyal and take the heat because he knows that Charles will keep him around in some capacity. He stepped down. He didn’t resign and he wasn’t fired. And they emphasize temporarily so in all likelihood he is still getting paid and the investigation is going to be internal so they will find a way to whitewash it. The tabloids will talk about it for a few days and then it will disappear. I think this is why Charles set up a foundation separate from the Princes Trust in the first place. Specifically, so that he could solicit money for his projects. Things that he could not justify the Duchy paying for. He used Duchy money to purchase Highgrove decades ago and then used Duchy money for all projects associated with it but because it’s part of the Duchy the income has to go back into the estate. Whereas the income from things like Dumfries House and Castle Mey can be filtered through the Foundation but not required to go back to those estates. It can be used as general income. Also. It’s interesting Fawcett got into trouble and Charles moved him from the Household payroll to the Foundation payroll. This is the same move the Cambridge’s made with Jason Knauf. He was moved from the household to the foundation after it was announced the Sussexes were going to separate from the Cambridge’s. We now know that this was also after he made those BS bullying allegations against Meghan. This was BTS damage control by the Cambridge’s. I still believe it was Harry who insisted on splitting from the Cambridge’s and the incident with Knauf was the catalyst.

    • Tessa says:

      I think Fawcett is here to stay. He has been planning events for Charles for years.

    • LaraW” says:

      I agree with this take— I don’t think this comes from members of the RF leaking, but influential background players in the political sphere. The stories all have an extra component that goes beyond strictly internal palace gossip. It gets into the realm of international relations and unsavory details about the Tory government. This names some very wealthy people— largely foreign nationals— who aren’t the sort, I think, to be dazzled and merely satisfied with dinner with Charles. They’re paying for access to Charles’ influence within the UK government, and we all know that he actively lobbies and inserts himself into government behind the scenes.

      In my mind, an analogous situation would be if former President Trump “granted” citizenship to wealthy Russian oligarchs in exchange for large sums of money. Actually a better comparison would probably be Jared Kushner or Ivanka selling access to Trump for “donations” to the Trump Organization.

      I think these are shots fired from the government as some kind of warning to Charles.

      • North of Boston says:

        Or Kuschner selling Golden Ticket US Visas to Chinese nationals in exchange for their “investments” in his family’s businesses.

        It’s putting money in someone’s private (not public non-profit charity) pockets in exchange for preferential receipt of a public resource.

    • PrincessK says:

      I agree this is definitely connected to the Ben Elliott story.

    • PrincessK says:

      @Catherine….l agree that the Ben Elliot story is linked to this. Someone is very upset by being made to look very foolish and has set out to show that the Heir to thrones hands are not altogether clean in this matter.

  15. Amy Bee says:

    I think Charles’ endorsement of the Daily Mail and writing an exclusive piece for them was an attempt to stop them from publishing these cash for access stories. Unfortunately it wasn’t enough and Times also had the story. I think that the press is punishing Charles for losing Harry and Meghan.

    • Catherine says:

      The press knows that William’s smear campaign is the primary reason the Sussexes left not Charles. KP/William/Knauf we’re actively colluding them. We’re they maybe hoping Charles would salvage the situation and keep them in the game so to speak. But Harry’s public comments always go back to the press treatment and that goes back primarily to William. Harry’s anger at Charles is primarily about him not doing more to support them against the press. But the press didn’t want that so in that sense Charles was doing exactly what they wanted.

      • Tessa says:

        Charles could have stopped William but did not. IMO. I was wondering what happened to Charles during the times William was working against Harry, like the Flybe stunt for example. I also wondered how William would be allowed to have that much clout by not only CHarles but by the Queen.

  16. Lizzie says:

    This family! The leaker could equally be either of his brothers or his son. I bet Harry is thankful everyday to be in Monticito and away from this corrupt vipers nest.

  17. Here4Tea says:

    This is Buckingham Palace all the way, to ensure that Fawcett’s wings are clipped before Chas becomes king. Such is the low opinion of this nest of vipers, that whenever a story like this emerges, most of us wonder about the bigger story that is being covered up. There is bound to be another even more eggregious abuse of power and influence going on.

    • Here4Tea says:

      In fact, the chattering classes appear to be more exercised about this than the repeated misuse of Royal Assent to interfere with the laws that govern the UK.
      It’s the courtiers at BP that are flexing their collected muscle before Chas takes to the throne.

    • anotherlily says:

      I agree with this. I think Geidt is involved. Charles was instrumental in getting rid of Geidt a few years ago (which means Fawcett was probably involved) but the Queen brought him back in some kind of advisory role. The recent release of updated arrangements for when the Queen dies could be a signal that she is not expected to live much longer or that a regency is now being planned. It could be that there is opposition to Fawcett having a position of influence when Charles is King or Regent.

  18. Amy Bee says:

    The press has chosen a side and it’s William’s. I think Charles was given until the end of summer to get Harry back into the fold and having failed, these stories exposing his shady deals are the result.

  19. Rapunzel says:

    So there’s been prior talk of the Cambridges’ shady financial dealings. What if this is them feeding the press a better financial scandal to avoid being exposed?

    I know folks have been saying the Cambridges aren’t that smart, but honestly, I believe these folks (The BRF) are all smart about getting money for themselves. And I can see Will doing better trying to smear Charles, as he’s done smearable stuff. Unlike Harry and Meg.

    • Here4Tea says:

      I don’t think they’re bright enough to have pulled this off. This required some serious political nous.

      • Rapunzel says:

        Yeah, but hasn’t Willyboy been getting cozy with some political types? Wasn’t there a meeting in Scotland he tried to cover up? Maybe he’s getting into political machinations?

        Ooooo!! What if the rumored London lawyer sidepiece is helping him? And he is so mad at and ready to ditch Kate because he knows this sidepiece has the brains to help him get what he wants?

  20. taurus says:

    It’s from Harry & Meghan! He has tons of information–documents–on all things royal. They have high-powered pr people quite skilled in dropping crumbs carefully. They are letting the royals know, they know and will play dirty.

    • Jan says:

      Harry and Meghan are too busy with living their lives, raising two children, running their Foundation, and don’t have time for the the nonsense that have been going on in the palaces on Shutter Island.
      Free at last, thank GA free at last.

    • Shelley says:

      Harry and Meghan don’t play dirty!

    • Jaded says:

      Harry and Meghan don’t play dirty. Yes, they have receipts but they wouldn’t go near this turd of a situation for anything. First, they’re both far too ethical to sully themselves with something like this and second, they’re far too busy with their own projects to try this sort of underhanded “getting even” nonsense.

    • VS says:

      impossible!!!! H&M will never work with the british press….never ever!

    • Kalana says:

      Harry and Meghan think long-term in a way the other royals simply can’t seem to manage. The Sussexes are busy setting up their new life. Being caught in revealing something like this when they are under so much scrutiny would stop everything they’re trying to do.

      • Christine says:

        I agree with you, again. There is no way Harry and Meghan would get involved in anything that would take away from their charitable focus. They have rebranded themselves in such a powerful and positive way, they don’t want or need this garbage.

    • HeatherC says:

      If the source was Harry and/or Meghan then the papers would have already leaked the name of the source.

    • Agreatreckoning says:

      @taurus, this is not from Harry & Meghan. They have other receipts they could drop that would be of greater importance to their situation and haven’t done so…a big no. This is not who they are no matter how hard some may try to make it seem otherwise.

      It is a weird & extraordinary story in that this isn’t shocking. Looking at the lists of people who’ve been given OBE’s, knighthoods and other such titles is a big WTF moment. This has been going on forever-before Charles was born. I’m guessing people have been buying their way into titles and gifts forever. Is it right? No. It’s a very curious thing to come up now. Not always a believer in wikipedia but you look at the list and a number of names are head scratching, if true.

      But, no, Harry & Meghan have nothing to do with this story.

  21. Lola says:

    The reason the Tory government and right-wing press want William is because he’s 100% under their thumb. 100%.

    The government & press have complained about Charles for years bc he’s shown to be a bit more liberal in some areas (environmentalism) and a bit more willing to interfere (black spider memos).

    Additionally, something is going on with the Queen’s health – she’s dropped a noticeable amount of weight over the past year.

    Personally, I think this is the government preemptively clipping Charles’ wings in preparation for King Charles. They need Charles to be weak, very weak so he won’t interfere.

    The press is a willing participant bc they’re starving for stories with the Sussexes having cut them off & there being no leaks.

    The Cambridges’ are okay with this because it distracts from their disastrous marriage and that the taxpayers may be on the hook for a few million pound more to fix up yet another house for them in Windsor.

    The battle lines are being redrawn. All parties are repositioning themselves in preparation for King Charles. They’re removing who they consider obstacles. It’s not as simple as Charles v William, although I do not think William is innocent here. Remember, William’s crisis manager is from the heart of Whitehall. She defended the £37 Billion track and trace fiasco.

    It is also in William’s best interest for Charles to be weak. He needs Charles to change as little as possible, so that during King William’s reign he can maintain the (Tory/Brexit/right wing) status quo.

    • Amy Too says:

      I’m with you Lola. Charles is already old. If you have to pick a side (and with the BRF and politics you ALWAYS have to pick a side) and you’re under the age of 70 (which I’m assuming most of these press people, business people, and politicians [British and international] are) or you’re older but have children that you’re hoping will take over for you when you die, are you going to side with the guy that nobody really likes, who already has an image problem, who is married to the woman nobody likes, who doesn’t share your views, who has lofty ideas about modernizing and changing things, and who is going to be king for 10-20 years starting when he’s already elderly and getting weaker by the day? Or are you going to side with the younger guy with the young family that for whatever stupid reason people like so much better than his father, who shares your values and goals, who is growing in strength and power, who has young children than can still be molded ideologically, and who will be king for 50ish years if you can either get him on the throne a little earlier by forcing his dad to retire rather than serve until death or get him to act as the power behind the throne by flat out refusing to cooperate with Charles’ monarchy unless he allows William to make some of the more important decisions—decisions that will align with your goals for the future?

      There are a lot of people who use the BRF as a way to get power for themselves, to amplify their messages, to sell their products, to financially enrich themselves. We’ve seen many examples recently between politicians, national press and business leaders, international press, politicians, and business leaders, etc. They all have a history of both influencing and working with the BRF. So while William himself is not likely smart enough to figure out what’s going on with his dad’s financials and then leak it to the press in a smart way that doesn’t immediately lead back to him, the people who surround the BRF and feed off it, probably are. I know that no one is ever going to agree to actually skip Charles and jump to Will, but there are ways to shorten his reign or handicap it so that it can’t be successful until he allows William more power.

  22. Athena says:

    Didn’t I read on this site that David Armstrong-Jones, the Earl of Snowden was to take over the Prince’sTrust. Maybe he wants to clean house but getting some resistance from Charles and decided to leak these stories in order to remove the negative elements from the organization before his name is fully attach to it. If it’s not coming from David, it’s coming from inside the foundation.
    Geist would be the other suspect as to who might leak the story. Charles might be trying to (behind the scene) make a move against his mother and this is a way of checking him.

    Charles is not going to be skipped in favor of the vacuous William, this is only a scenario that plays in William’s mind. There’s been Prince of Wales in the past who were not fit, they were not passed over. I don’t get why people keep repeating this as if it can actually happen.

    It’s too earlier in the game for Andrew to attack Charles and why should he when mommy is still there to protect him. Only after she’s gone and Charles starts feeding him to the wolves will Andrew attack and it will be personal, things that happened within the households.
    What I find interesting is that Fawcett use to sell unwanted gift giving to the crown with Charles pocketing the money.

    • JC says:

      The Prince’s Trust is a separate organisation to The Prince’s Foundation. Fawcett isn’t connected to the Trust so we can probably rule out a powerplay around that.

  23. 2cents says:

    The endgame is set, the pieces are moving. This is not just William or Charles feuding about succession after the Queen. They are just pawns in a larger scheme.

    In my view it’s clear that the British pressbarons have decided to attack Charles’ increasing power as possible regent and future king. If the government weighs in with Yougov popularity polls to show a further decrease in Charles’ popularity, Boris’ may be tempted to suggest a referendum whether or not Charles should be the next king. In that case Charles will be forced to abdicate and William becomes king if he’s willing to play their game. The silence and lack of support from William for his father during this attack is very telling. Supporting Charles would go against his own interest.

    Another scenario is that the British rightwing establishment wants to abolish the monarchy all together. Then the dirt they have on William will also be exposed in the UK media. That damage to the monarchy will be fatal, because George is too small to claim the throne. Enough time for Boris Johnson to write a new constitution and opt to be the first President of a Divided Britain.

    The courtiers will try to save the heirs but as part of the government their fates are sealed and in Boris’ hands. They can go and live from their royal memoirs in a post monarchy era.

    • anotherlily says:

      There will be no referendum. Charles will be King the instant his mother dies.

    • Kalana says:

      I think that’s too unstable. Too much change can happen in unstable times. Charles will be King and William will stay a lazy King-in-waiting until Charles dies. William is very easy to control if someone like Murdoch is willing to humiliate William in the papers. I think all this is a way of bringing Charles to heel.

    • Couch potato says:

      Skipping Chuck is no doubt PWT’s dream scenario, but he only way they can do this legally, is to make Chuck abdicate. If that’s what they’re trying, they’re playing a very dangerous game, because it can easily lead to the public to demand to end of the monarchy all together. They are really stupid, if that’s what they’re going for, but then again, they are stupid.

      Re second option; if they abolish the monarchy, the aristo titles are next. There’s no way the established white right wing is going for abolition, and certainly not Boris. He doesn’t want to be a president, he wants a title, Sir Johnson. They have a different mindset than US citizens, and look down on everyone who’s not in their circle, including americans. They literally said out loud, they weren’t against Meghan because she was WOC, they were against her because she was an american. Bullshit of course, they’re racist as f…, but it says a lot about how they view other nations, when that’s ok to leak to the public.

      IMO this is most likely BP courtiers trying to get rid of Fawcett before Chuck takes over completely. There’s a power war going on behind the scene,

  24. Tessa says:

    William if he is involved in this needs to be cautious, Fawcett probably knows a lot about the goings on in that family, including what William has been up to.

  25. Jan says:

    Please STOP with Cain is going to step over Charles in the line of succession.
    Charles waited all these years to give up the throne, only happens if he dies.

    • Kalana says:

      I think Charles would be more likely to burn it all down than stand aside for William.

    • Calibration says:

      Indeed. It’s not a popularity contest. Charles will be king unless he dies. I don’t understand where this bs comes from.

  26. LaraW” says:

    Is there a particular reason why the UK monarchy has such close ties with the Saudi Arabian princes? Or is this common among all the European monarchies? It just seems like the RF, Charles in particular, has an unusually strong relationship, what with all the jewelry, his various expensive trips to the Middle East, that photo of him wearing (what I presume is) honorary royal Saudi clothing, etc. Isn’t there also some kind of relationship with respect to Elizabeth and her horses?

    • Tourmaline says:


    • Jaded says:

      Saudi Arabia has been a British protectorate since WWI, and the UK was one of the first countries to recognize SA in 1926 and sent their first diplomatic delegation there. There are many joint ventures between British and Saudi Companies (including a huge arms deal worth billions that was revealed by Thatcher’s government to have been funneling money for extravagant holidays, fleets of classic cars, shopping trips and escorts for various Saudi Princes). Some 30,000 British nationals are living and working in Saudi Arabia as well as nearly 100,000 Saudi nationals living in the UK. Saudi Arabia is the UK’s primary trading partner in the Middle East and is Saudi Arabia’s closest European ally. So as you can see the 2 countries have a rather *interesting* relationship to this day, promoted by the likes of both Prince Andrew and Prince Charles, only Andrew was clumsy about it and got caught taking money from them. Now it appears Charles has too….

    • Nic919 says:

      William was posing for photos with MBS along with his dad so he is as tied into Saudi money as Charles.

    • Dilettante says:

      British Petroleum, now known as BP.

  27. KT says:

    I know the intra-palace and interpersonal stuff is fascinating, guys, but you are all overlooking the fact that the U.K. does have a handful of anti-monarchy pro-Republican organisations trying to prove that we should get rid of the whole lot of them, and very occasionally they come up with something genuinely scandalous that raises serious questions.

    This is one of those stories.

    No-one who wants the monarchy as an institution to continue is leaking *this shit* – it’s serious stuff, not gossip. There may have been actual laws broken.

    • Hell Nah! says:

      @ KT: I hadn’t considered this angle. Do carry on then…


    • LaraW” says:

      I hadn’t considered that angle either. But why release the news on a drip rather than drop a huge bomb that exposes it all? The Ben Elliott story quoted his emails, and the other story about Dumfries House quotes another super detailed email to Michael Wynne-Parker, which seems to suggest that whoever the source is, they have access to a lot more sensitive information.

      I was looking again at the Dumfries house story and it say, after specifically calling out Wynne-Parker and Bortrick, that “ A further 20 per cent goes to another middleman.” Who is this other middleman? (And who are Wynne-Parker and Bortrick in the first place?)

      • SnoodleDumpling says:

        Releasing it all at once would mean that everyone is screaming about everything all at once, and when people are overwhelmed with awful they’re more likely to shut down and ignore all of it.

        But if it’s a seemingly unending feed of one thing after another with all or at least most of the bad things being given time to sink in and for the public to puzzle out the details, room for the public to breathe in the awful and get properly worked up about it, well, it’s harder to ignore that.

        Major systemic change is not accomplished in one day, with just one big bombshell. They have to convince a majority of the British public that the monarchy needs to go, NOW, and convince a large enough majority well enough that they make the government’s lives more of a living hell than they think actually doing it will be until it’s DONE.

  28. Jay says:

    This feels like a focused internal push to get rid of Fawcett in particular, but they don’t seem to be calling for hearings or digging up messy stuff that might splash back onto Charles. If someone (like the Wessexes, Andrew, or the courtiers) really wanted to sully Charles, I think they would be making a bigger stink about rooting out corruption, replacing his whole team etc etc.

    Like, if this is true, it’s an actual crime, yet it’s being swept aside pretty quickly. Doesn’t feel like someone that wants to embarrass the monarchy – based on his reputation, there are likely plenty of other things they could have put out about Fawcett, this is probably just the most expedient.

    Meanwhile, the investigation into Meghan bringing employees to tears just by existing enters it’s second year🤷‍♀️

    • KT says:

      There’s damage control in operation, obviously. The *press in general* don’t want to get rid of their meal-ticket so there is a tug of war going on between criticising and protecting.

      In any case this stuff goes way beyond petty personal rivalries.

  29. TEALIEF says:

    All this self-created meshugaas built on hubris and indispensability, reminds me of the Raoul Silva’s monologue on rats overrunning his grandmother’s island in the Bond movie Skyfall.

    “So how do you get rats off an island? Hmm? My grandmother showed me. We buried an oil drum and hinged the lid. Then we wired coconut to the lid as bait and the rats would come for the coconut and… they would fall into the drum. And after a month, you have trapped all the rats, but what do you do then? Throw the drum into the ocean? Burn it? No. You just leave it and they begin to get hungry. And one by one…they start eating each other until there are only two left. The two survivors. And then what? Do you kill them? No. You take them and release them into the trees, but now they don’t eat coconut anymore. Now, they only eat rat. You have changed their nature. The two survivors. This is what she made us.”

  30. Cindy says:

    Devil’s advocate, but providing large sums of money to restore what I would presume are heritage sites might be worthy of citizenship and honors?

  31. PrincessK says:

    I doff my hat to the Sussex Squad. I was listening to one of their old podcasts the very day that this story broke. Guess who the Squad were discussing in this podcast from earlier this year…none other than Fawcett. They mentioned how much Diana hated him. They mentioned the fact a black employee in one of Charles households had complained that he was a bully and used a racial slur against her. Most interesting Charles tried to persuade Harry and Meghan to use Fawcett’s events company to organise their wedding. The Sussexes said no. Who knows maybe Fawcett has also been leaking stories to the press as payback?

    The Sussex squad are always on the ball and can see things coming a mile off.

    • SnoodleDumpling says:

      I mean, that is probably mostly because the BRF and the entire slimeball ecosystem that surrounds them is really incredibly predictable…except when they manage to find an option even stupider and more damaging to themselves than anything anyone ever anticipated, but they do that so consistently that now we’re all writing ‘??? (BRF sets new record for stupid)’ in as the eternal option D when we try to speculate about them.

  32. anotherlily says:

    I reccomend reading the wikipedia information on Michael Fawcett. Also, references at the end of the information, including the ‘rape allegation’ story from ‘throne out’.

    The cash for honours allegation first came to light in 2017. It is being reported again because there is an investigation by the Charities Commission and also two complaints have now been made to the police.

    • Jaded says:

      I really, REALLY hope this thing blows sky-high and reveals what’s really going on. For far too long Fawcett and Charles have had a relationship built on sleaze, lies and illegally obtained money infusions for quid pro quo deals.

  33. Well Wisher says:

    ‘Pay to Play’ is nothing new, this story is not new. The Cambridges had their own dinner party in New York in the early 2010s. The cost was £32,000 per person.
    So this item is not timely nor rare. It maybe factual?
    The events in this latest item feels eeriely similar to the press attacks towards the Sussexes, starting at least three months after their wedding. At that time, the attacks were conducted by the KP communications team.
    Since then four people left/in the process of leaving KP employ, but at least one of them, a female staffer, went to the Royal Foundation. Smart people observed transfer of payment from KP to the Royal Foundation for services rendered in their financial reports. Why?
    This female staffer, a Tory, was responsible for the communication ‘success’ of brexit.
    Prince Charles wrongly assumed that removing the briefer(s), leaker(s) will encourage the Sussexes to eventually return.
    Instead, the habit, continues unabated with new targets. Some one is winning?

    One solution to this problem is have the public directly affected by the rf to have reasonable expectations for their monarch. They are humans, so they cannot be perfect. That will take away the power from the snitch.
    As the overlords/press barons persist, same public/citizens ignore their reports, decrease demands and their profits. There will not be no need for a scapegoat and no made up ‘Republic’ to be used as a tool nor to drown out legitimate complaints from actual republicans.

    It is alleged that Bill rarely spoke to his father for three years and suddenly became nicer just in time see the Sussexes leave, instead of just Meghan.
    What did Charles expect? But did Bill win?
    No. He is being played like a drum by the press barons.
    He wants to be celebrated for being famous.
    The Cambridges are the weakest link, one can only send out healing energy.
    Thank Goodness the Sussexes have their self autonomy and I hope that they continue to be impervious to external factors.

  34. blunt talker says:

    I think there is two possible situations going on-Putting pressure on Charles to abdicate because of constant scandals or probes-William and Kate are the favorites to replace the queen and all the royals know this-The Queen could be betting on keeping her darling son Andrew from becoming a dot in history-she wants him restored before the Epstein scandal broke-doing everything to ensure Andrew has a place and money in the royal family after her death

  35. Moderatelywealthy says:

    Just a day ago we got a story about William personally saving a man and his family’ life by taking them out of Afghanistan abd speeding them up to UK and life there…

    Now we have a story about Charles and his second in command selling citizenship s dbhonors to a Saudi …

    Maybe us as simple as Sophie helping the Cambridges in their silent,ghost fight with Charles …