Prince William says he is grieving loss of both grandmother and ‘extraordinary’ Queen

Loss of ‘Grannie’ does not yet feel real, says new Prince of Wales

Adam Forrest
Saturday 10 September 2022 18:46 BST
Prince Andrew speaks publicly for first time since Queen's death

Prince William has said he is grieving for both his grandmother and “our extraordinary Queen”, as he made a very personal tribute to the late sovereign.

“I knew this day would come, but it will be some time before the reality of life without Grannie will truly be real,” said the new Prince of Wales in his first public remarks following the death of Queen Elizabeth II.

“I will honour her memory by supporting my father, the King, in every way I can,” William said, speaking of his father King Charles III’s accession to the throne.

William said the world had “lost an extraordinary leader”, adding that the Queen had provided the perfect example of “service and dignity in public life” to his generation. He continued: “I, however, have lost a grandmother. And while I will grieve her loss, I also feel incredibly grateful. I have had the benefit of the Queen’s wisdom and reassurance into my fifth decade.”

The prince also said his children would have “memories that will last their whole lives” of their great-grandmother, and that his wife, Princess Kate, “has had twenty years of her guidance and support”.

He said of the Queen: “She was by my side at my happiest moments. And she was by my side during the saddest days of my life. I thank her for the kindness she showed my family and me.” He added: “My grandmother famously said that grief was the price we pay for love. All of the sadness we will feel in the coming weeks will be testament to the love we felt for our extraordinary Queen.”

William was present when his father was formally proclaimed King in an accession council ceremony with Liz Truss and other senior figures in the privy council at St James’s Palace in London on Saturday morning.

William and Kate joined Harry and Meghan, the Duke and Duchess of Sussex, to view floral tributes at Windsor Castle on Saturday afternoon – the couples’ first appearance in public together since March 2020. A royal source said William had asked Harry and Meghan to “join him and the Princess of Wales” on the walkabout.

The King announced on Friday that William and Kate were to be the new Prince and Princess of Wales. This means that William follows in his father’s footsteps, and that Kate has become the first person since Diana, Princess of Wales to use the title.

William’s tribute to his grandmother came as Buckingham Palace announced that the Queen’s funeral would be held at Westminster Abbey at 11am on Monday 19 September, which has also been declared a bank holiday.

Ahead of the funeral service, the coffin bearing the Queen’s body will lie in state in Westminster Hall for “four clear days” from 14 September to allow members of the public to pay their respects.

The new prime minister Liz Truss, along with her ministers, opposition party leaders and other senior figures, took an oath of allegiance to the new King as parliament met for a rare Saturday sitting.

The King also held an audience with the new prime minister and her cabinet, followed by a separate audience with Labour leader Sir Keir Starmer, Liberal Democrat leader Sir Ed Davey, and the SNP’s Westminster leader Ian Blackford.

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