Petition against new Prince of Wales hits 25,000 signatures as King prepares to visit Cardiff
A petition against continuing with the Prince of Wales title has now hit 25,000 signatures, just under a week since it was started.
Charles III announced that he was making William and Kate the new Prince and Princess of Wales during his first speech as King last Friday.
But the petition’s author, Trystan Gruffydd, said that since the days of the Welsh Princes the title has been “held exclusively by Englishmen as a symbol of dominance over Wales”.
“The title remains an insult to Wales and is a symbol of historical oppression and also implies that Wales is still a principality, undermining Wales’ status as a nation and a country,” the petition text says.
Tomorrow the King will visit Wales for the first time since the decision to hand on the title was made, visiting Llandaf Cathedral, the Senedd and finally Cardiff Castle.
Llandaf Cathedral itself could be the site of a “low key” investiture for the Prince of Wales after the King’s Coronation next year, Royal sources have said.
The Telegraph quoted the source saying: “They want to make sure that any ceremony is about celebrating Wales, rather than focusing on them as individuals. They have lived in Wales and they have spent a lot of time going back to Wales and they want to make sure anything they do is in keeping with the wishes of the Welsh people.”
“The Prince must also decide on arrangements for his investiture as Prince of Wales, which is scheduled to happen after the King’s coronation and is likely to be next year,” it says.
“William will become only the third Prince of Wales to be invested in Wales itself, and is said to favour a more low-key ceremony than the one at Caernarfon Castle for his father in 1969.
“One possibility is that the investiture could take place at Cardiff Cathedral, and a decision must also be taken on the role of the Princess of Wales in the ceremony, as no Prince of Wales in recent history has inherited the title while married.”
Charles’ investiture at Caernarfon castle in 1969 drew protests including Cymdeithas yr Iaith’s non-violent mass protests, to more direct threats from the the Free Wales Army and Mudiad Amddiffyn Cymru.
This week it was revealed that King Charles III would not want the new Prince of Wales, William, to go through what he did during his 1969 investiture, according to Wales’ first Presiding Officer.
Appearing on ITV Wales’ current affairs programme Sharp End, former Minister for Culture, Tourism and Sport Lord Dafydd Elis-Thomas shared details of conversations he had with the-then Prince Charles.
Presenter Rob Osborne had asked panel guests whether, given the protests during the 1969 investiture, they thought the announcement last Friday was made to limit the debate or the discussions of anyone who would oppose it.
“I don’t know the answer to that”, Lord Elis-Thomas said, “but I can tell you in discussions with him when he was still Prince of Wales, when I had cultural responsibilities in the Welsh Government, one of the issues I did raise with him was that I hoped there would never again be an investiture in Caernarfon Castle.
“[Prince Charles] laughed and said: ‘Do you think I want to put William through what I went through?’”
The Royal title was originally given to Edward II of Caernarfon, son of Edward I who conquered Wales, as a means of confirming that the ‘Tywysog Cymru’ title previously held by native princes of Wales was subservient to that of the King of England.
Since then it has been held by 21 different heirs to the throne, although seven of them never became king.
There have previously been long periods of history, such as between 1553 with the accession of Edward Tudor and the passing of the title to Henry Frederick Stuart 63 years later, when the title did not exist at all.
On Tuesday leader of Plaid Cymru Adam Price has said that any decision over the investiture of the new Prince of Wales should be made in Wales.
His comments come after over 20,000 people signed a petition opposing the passing on of the controversial title to Prince William.
Adam Price had originally said on Friday that while there would be “a time” for a public debate around the title, at the moment Plaid Cymru’s thoughts were “with the Royal Family as they grieve”.
His comments came after First Minister Mark Drakeford said on Sunday and yesterday that there was “no rush” to another investiture and that a discussion should take place in the meantime.
Adam Price added: “I welcome what the First Minister, Mark Drakeford, had to say on the question of an investiture.
“I’ve seen stories in the London press that an investiture is going to happen and I think that a line is crossed because that gives the Prince of Wales a quasi-official status in Welsh life.
“I think that’s a decision that we in Wales should make in a time when we’re living in a modern democratic Wales – it’s a decision we need to make here before any announcement is made.”
He added that there should be no rush to make a decision but that it was one for Members of the Senedd to make.
“I’m a republican, and there is sensitivity and pain around the [Prince of Wales] title for many of us,” he said. “But others have a different view and we need a discussion on the matter.”
On Monday Mark Drakeford said that there is a “discussion” to be had about on an elected Head of State, but it should not be had this week.
In an interview with ITV’s Sharp End, the First Minister said that there needed to be a focus on mourning the Queen.
Asked by presenter Rob Osborne whether there should be a debate on the issue, he said: “Well, not this week.
“I think there’s a discussion there,” he said. “It’s alive and happening already. But this week is a week about reflecting on the life, the service, the memories that people have of someone who has been part of everybody’s life.”
He once again confirmed that he wasn’t consulted before the creation of the title of Prince of Wales for Prince William, but said that he hadn’t expected to be.
“No, wouldn’t expect to be there’s no constitutional significance in the role of the Prince of Wales,” he said. “It doesn’t have responsibilities of its own.
“I think it’s a decision that the king has made and in some ways that has avoided what might have been a drawn-out debate about whether or not it should happen.”
Support our Nation today
For the price of a cup of coffee a month you can help us create an independent, not-for-profit, national news service for the people of Wales, by the people of Wales.