New Prince of Wales says he is learning Welsh – knows how to say ‘paned’ and ‘bara brith’
The Prince of Wales has said that he has started learning Welsh as it emerges he has no plans to stage a formal investiture to mark receiving his new title.
William spoke about getting to grips with the language with Reverend Steven Bunting from St Thomas Church in Swansea where he and Kate visited on Tuesday afternoon, telling him he had already picked up the word ‘paned’, meaning a cup of tea.
Rev Bunting told the PA news agency: “We already know they love Wales, but having them here has been amazing and is an early sign, I think, of their commitment to Wales.
“They’ve blown us away by speaking to every person young and old, it shows how wholly committed they are to their role as Prince and Princess of Wales.
“The Prince of Wales was even talking about learning Welsh, and said he’d learned the word ‘paned’ meaning cup of tea and ‘bara brith’.
“I think he’s taking being Prince of Wales very, very seriously.”
His father, King Charles, studied Welsh while at university in Aberystwyth and paid tribute to his teacher Tedi Millward when he died in 2020.
It is understood William has no plans for “any kind” of an investiture like the ceremony staged for the King, who was officially invested with the title Prince of Wales by the Queen during an event staged at Caernarfon Castle in July 1969.
A royal source said in the aftermath of the Queen’s death: “The new Princess of Wales appreciates the history associated with this role but will understandably want to look to the future as she creates her own path.”
A spokesperson for the couple said this week: “Right now they are focused on deepening the trust and respect they have with the people of Wales over time.”
A few days after the Queen’s death, William spoke on the telephone to Mark Drakeford, First Minister of Wales, in a conversation in which William mentioned his “deep affection for Wales”.
The prince, who served as an RAF search and rescue helicopter pilot when living on Anglesey with wife Kate, “expressed his and the Princess of Wales’s honour in being asked by the King to serve the Welsh people”.
The Prince and Princess began their first visit to Wales since receiving their titles by travelling to Anglesey where they made their first home as newlyweds, and where they raised their eldest son Prince George for the first few months of his life.
Crowds waited at Holyhead Marina to greet the royal couple. The station’s coxswain, Tony Price, told William and Kate about its new mental health welfare room on site.
He said to them: “We had an incident here in Holyhead where one of the crew gave CPR and tried to revive a person. Within the chaos and everything going on we realised we didn’t have a bolthole – somewhere our crew could go to look into that welfare.
“We now have a 24/7 helpline for the crew. The greatest thing they have done is when they (the crew) turn up now they can actually say ‘no, this is not for me’. I think that’s great.”
Volunteers recalled Storm Emma which wrecked Holyhead Marina in 2018 and destroyed 80 boats and vessels.
William said: “A bit of a dramatic year that one.”
He also discussed the storm with members of HM Coastguard who the royal couple met at the nearby Holyhead Marina and Cafe Bar.
The Prince asked: “Was that predicted at the time?”
Deputy station officer at Holyhead Coastguard rescue team, Arwel Jones, replied: “We weren’t expecting the marina to be blown away.”
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