Prince of Wales role may not need ‘further ceremonial underpinning’ of investiture says Mark Drakeford
The First Minister has suggested that there may not be a need for an investiture for the new Prince of Wales at all, after meeting the new King Charles at Cardiff Castle this afternoon.
Speaking to TalkTV after that meeting, he said that Prince William should be given time to get used to his new role before thoughts turned to another investiture.
After that, they could start thinking about “whether there is a need for any further ceremonial underpinning of what has already been announced,” he said.
Charles’ investiture at Caernarfon castle in 1969 drew protests including Cymdeithas yr Iaith’s non-violent mass protests, to more direct threats from the Free Wales Army and Mudiad Amddiffyn Cymru.
The King made Prince William the new Prince of Wales in his first speech as Head of State a week ago, an act that has proven controversial as almost 30,000 people have since signed a petition opposing the continuation of the title.
But Royal sources have since then hinted that this time a “low key” investiture could take place at Llandaff Cathedral – which the King visited this morning.
Speaking today, Mark Drakeford suggested the investiture proceedings for William need not follow the same form as that of the 1969 ceremony that saw the title bestowed upon his father.
He told TalkTV: “Well, I certainly don’t think that 1969 is a good guide for what should happen in 2022. Wales is a very different place.
“The nature of the monarchy has developed over that period. My message is that we shouldn’t be in a rush about all of this.
“We should allow the new prince, as I say, to become familiar with his new responsibilities, develop the job in a way that will work for him and will work for Wales.
“And then we can think about how and whether there is a need for any further ceremonial underpinning of what has already been announced.”
The King was generally warmly received in Cardiff today but boos could be heard when the King and Queen Consort arrived at Cardiff Castle.
Around 40 demonstrators gathered outside the castle walls on Friday with banners displaying messages such as “Abolish the Monarchy” and “Democracy Now”.
It is the first negativity the King has encountered beyond individual protests during his tour of the devolved nations as the new monarch.
Some protesters held giant Owain Glyndwr flags as the visit fell on the day that celebrates the legacy of the rebel who is considered to be the last native-Welsh Prince of Wales.
Many wore T-shirts bearing the words “Yes Cymru” – the slogan of independence campaigners.
The atmosphere was more welcoming around Llandaff Cathedral where members of the public chanted “God save the King” and showered the couple with flowers and gifts.
However, a lone male voice at one point shouted over the crowd: “We pay £100 million a year for you, and for what?”
When Charles and Camilla left the Senedd, there were a small number of boos from a few protesters but these were drowned out by people singing God Save The King.
But as they made their way into the castle walls, following their visit to the Senedd, anti-monarchy protesters could be heard booing loudly while holding signs reading: “We want a democracy, a Welsh republic”.
Although it was meant to be a silent protest by a number of groups under the banner Real Democracy Now, the rally also at times broke into song led by members of the Cor Cochion, a socialist choir based in Cardiff.
Campaigners, led by former Senedd member Bethan Sayed, said they want the Welsh public to consider whether a future without the monarchy is possible.
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