Prince Charles wouldn't mind if Australia ditched the monarchy

The Prince of Wales once privately expressed his belief that if Australia became a republic it would be "no skin off anyone's nose", it has been claimed.

As the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge's royal tour of Australia and New Zealand came to an end, Clarence House declined to comment on reports that the next in line to the throne is indifferent to a republic Down Under.

Prince Charles's comments, reportedly made 31 years ago on a similar trip that he made to Australia with Princess Diana and their infant son William, only emerged last week, as the royal couple returned to the UK.

The veteran Australian journalist David Marr wrote in The Guardian last week: "Back then it was the iron etiquette around royalty that nothing they said could ever be reported. But so many archives have given up their secrets in the past 30 years that surely it can be reported now that the Prince of Wales's attitude to an Australian republic back then was: 'No skin off anyone's nose'."

While Clarence House declined to comment on his private views, it seems the news of Prince Charles's reported views have emerged at a time when appetite in Australia for a republic is at one of its lowest levels.

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