What Will Happen When Prince William Becomes King?December 15, 2020
What will happen when Prince William becomes king? Since the beginning, the British royal family has fascinated people all over the world. The glitz, the glamour, and the drama all make for an interesting spectacle, to say the least. And with intense, dramatic adaptations of the royal family’s history in shows like Netflix’s The Crown, the obsession with the royals has only grown. To that end, one thing people are constantly questioning is the line of succession. Obviously, Queen Elizabeth helms the royal family, but what will happen when she tragically passes away? After that, what will happen when Prince William becomes king?
Well, for starters, Prince William isn’t next in line to the throne. His father, Prince Charles, will follow in the queen’s footsteps, according to Nick Bullen, editor-in-chief of True Royalty TV. “When the queen very sadly dies, Prince Charles will be the king,” he told Fox News. “There is no discussion. That’s what the Queen wants. That’s what the Prince of Wales wants.” He added that’s also what Prince William desires as well, as he’s in no rush to ascend to the throne. But as far as what will happen, logistically, it’s complicated.
When Prince William becomes king, Britain will mourn a bit
Before Prince William can become king, his grandmother, Queen Elizabeth will have to die. Obviously, Prince William won’t immediately ascend to the throne at that time, as his father, Prince Charles, is next in line to the crown. So, in fact, both Queen Elizabeth and Prince Charles will have to pass on before Prince William can become king. And when that happens, the country, and world, will mourn.
According to Town & Country, when the Queen passes away, there are certain protocols that will be followed. First of all, there will likely be a 12-day period of mourning throughout all of Britain. Additionally, it’s suspected that Queen Elizabeth’s body will lie in a coffin in Westminster Hall until her funeral so people can pay their respects.
While that’s what will happen when Queen Elizabeth passes away, it’s also likely the protocol that will be followed when Prince Charles passes away once he’s king. So, before Prince William becomes king, the nation will have mourned twice over, and Prince William himself will have lost a grandmother and father; he’ll be mourning himself as well.
This is what Prince William's official title will be when he becomes king
Because the scenario in which Prince William becomes king is still pretty far off, there are a lot of hypothetical scenarios out there that Prince William himself has shrugged off. For instance, many people wonder what his official title will be once he ascends to the throne, as it’s more complicated than just “King William.”
First of all, when someone becomes king or queen, they basically have the power to change their name to whatever they want, according to Town & Country. Queen Elizabeth’s father was named Albert, but when he became king, he decided to go by King George. And when Prince William was asked what he wanted to be called in a video call with some adorable kiddos, he simply “declined to comment.”
Prince William’s name prior to becoming king is already a mouthful — William Arthur Philip Louis, duke of Cambridge, earl of Strathearn and Baron Carrickfergus, according to Britannica – so whatever he chooses to go by will hopefully be a little less complicated.
This is what will happen to Kate Middleton when Prince William becomes king
The entire world was pretty obsessed with the royal family when Prince William got engaged to his future bride, Kate Middleton — who’s undergone a stunning transformation. After all, Middleton wasn’t a member of any royal family, and the two had quite the love story. In fact, Middleton was the very definition of a modern-day Cinderella story, and when she and Prince William got married, she actually became the Duchess of Cambridge, a pretty impressive title.
However, when Prince William becomes king one day, Middleton will no longer be the Duchess of Cambridge, and she also won’t be referred to “Kate” at all. In fact, once her husband ascends to the throne and chooses his own title, Middleton will also change her title. It’s unclear whether or not Middleton will get to choose her title like Prince William will, but according to Cafe Mom, she’ll likely go by Queen Catherine, quite the dignified name if there ever was one.
Prince William will travel more when he becomes king
The specific duties of the royal family obviously vary from person to person, but pretty much all of its members have to travel far more often that the average person. Whether on official duty, or to make appearances with other state officials, the royals spend plenty of time on planes. And when Prince William becomes king in the future, not only will he likely travel so much more than he does as a mere prince, but he’ll also be able to pack just a little lighter.
In fact, according to Express, whoever is the king or queen doesn’t need a passport to travel to other countries. Obviously, as the highest title in Britain, the king or queen is easily recognizable and apparently doesn’t need the formal piece of identification to travel. Interestingly enough, William’s wife, Kate Middleton, will still need a passport, and William will likely have to answer certain security questions before taking off. Still, it’s one less thing for the future king to worry about.
When Prince William becomes king, Kate Middleton will get access to all the crown jewels
It’s no secret that one of the absolute biggest perks of becoming a member of the royal family is that you no longer have to stress about money, or even think about working a regular job. For that reason, being a royal is pretty much a dream come true, and part of that dream includes jewels — lots and lots of jewels. In the British tradition, the so-called crown jewels belong to the Queen and the Queen only. So while Prince William is still a prince, his wife, Kate Middleton, doesn’t get to just wear any of the crown jewels she wishes.
As it stands, Middleton gets to borrow certain pieces of jewelry from Queen Elizabeth for special occasions. But once William becomes king, and Middleton becomes Queen Catherine, she will gain access to all of the crown jewels, according to Cafe Mom. Yes, all of them. The noteworthy pieces, including tiaras, crowns, rubies, emeralds and so many diamonds will all be items that Middleton can choose from (via Town & Country).
Prince William will be very involved in Parliament when he becomes king
As important as the British royal family is, it’s also interesting to note that even the highest-ranked royals (the queen or king) don’t have a whole lot of political power. Specifically, as the Royal UK website notes, Queen Elizabeth is the head of state, and is to remain politically neutral. The queen doesn’t vote and she isn’t elected into any sort of office, either. However, she does have ceremonial roles, and when it comes to Parliament, the British body of government, she’s very involved. So, then, will be Prince William when he becomes king.
Additionally, there’s a formal phrase, “Queen in Parliament” which is a descriptive term for “the British legislature, which consists of the Sovereign, the House of Lords and the House of Commons.” While the queen doesn’t have political power, she does open the sessions of Parliament, and approves Orders and Proclamations as well. So, when Prince William is king, he’ll then take over those duties and become just as involved in Parliament as his grandmother.
The national anthem could change when Prince William becomes king
Perhaps one of the biggest changes the nation of Britain will see once Prince William becomes king is that the national anthem will be different. For so long, the British national anthem has been “God save the Queen,” with more lines following focused on the queen. However, when Prince William becomes king, that will obviously not be necessary. As Express reported, the future national anthem would be: “God save our gracious King! Long live our noble King! God save the King! Send him victorious, Happy and glorious, Long to reign over us, God save the King.”
As interesting as that fact is, that’s not the only change. You see, following William, his son, Prince George is next in line to be king. And he won’t be the first George to be king of England one day. In fact, the national anthem itself first came about during the reign of King George II in 1745, meaning William’s son could one day have the original lyrics sung for him, which starts with “God save great George our king.”
Prince Harry's life won't change much when Prince William becomes king
While Prince William has practically always known that he’ll one day be king, his younger brother, Prince Harry, knew just the opposite. The youngest son of Princess Diana and Prince Charles, Prince Harry had virtually no chance of ever becoming king, though it appears that doesn’t exactly bother him. In fact, since his marriage to American actress Meghan Markle, Harry has taken a step back from the royal family.
As The New York Times reported, both Harry and Meghan have denounced their roles as senior royal family members, and it’s unclear what their future will look like away from the throne. However, one thing is certain: once William becomes king, Harry’s life likely won’t change all that much. Not only would he still be fourth in line to the throne after William’s three children, but he might not even want to be in line at all.
This is where Prince William and Kate Middleton will live when he becomes king
Let’s just get one thing straight: Prince William and Kate Middleton definitely don’t live in a tiny shack in England. In fact, after they got married, the pair moved into an apartment at Kensington Palace, which Middleton redecorated to look just as swanky as any palace you could imagine (via Hello!).
However, once Prince William becomes king, their residence will change. Obviously, they’ll still live in a palace, but their upgrade will be a lot bigger, and a whole lot more prestigious. In fact, ever since Queen Victoria’s reign, the British monarchs have all lived in Buckingham Palace in London. To that end, once Prince William ascends to the throne, it’s likely that he will also move in, according to Cafe Mom.
However, the family could actually move to Buckingham Palace before William becomes king; his father, Prince Charles, is reportedly planning on staying at his residence, Clarence House, when he becomes king.
This is how Prince William and Kate Middleton will wake up every day when he becomes king
While you might automatically associate being a member of the royal family with money, fame, power, and a calendar full of fancy events to attend, there’s one part of being royal that doesn’t sound all that exciting. And only the king and the queen have to deal with it, so once Prince William becomes king himself, he’ll also learn of the seriously annoying tradition he has to follow.
And what might that tradition be? Being awoken by bagpipes of course! Once William becomes King of England, it seems as though he won’t have any use for an alarm clock, as he’ll be awoken in the same way that the monarch of Britain has been for centuries. The Piper of the Sovereign, as the bagpiper is known, has been playing for the king or queen since 1843; according to Hello! magazine, he or she always travels with the queen. Well, that’s one way to start the day!
Prince William can't make any new laws on his own when he becomes king
Much like the king or queen of England doesn’t hold a lot of political authority throughout Britain, they also don’t have a ton of authority, period — well, at least when it comes to laws. You see, while the kings and queens of Britain’s past could certainly make laws and govern over the nation, the modern monarchy of England is more symbolic than anything else.
To that end, when Prince William becomes king, he can’t make any new laws on his own. Specifically, according to the Royal UK website, the king or queen of Britain is the Head of State, and in that instance, is what’s known as “a constitutional monarchy.” Basically, even though the king or queen might be known as the Head of State, the only way legislation is created and passed is within Parliament, which have elected positions. So, when William is king, he won’t just be able to create new laws without the help of parliament, despite being the literal king of England and pretty much getting anything else he might want.
Prince William will be a lot richer when he becomes king
Being a member of the royal family doesn’t come cheap, and keeping up with the Cambridges, as it were, is a hefty task. After all, it must cost a lot to buy all the proper clothes and shoes, as well as attend the best private schools and colleges. But obviously, Prince William doesn’t really have to worry about that. According to Town & Country, William is worth an estimated $40 million, and his income has only grown over the years.
However, once William becomes king, he and Kate Middleton will see an even bigger increase to their wealth. According to Cafe Mom, the king receives a paycheck from the Duchy of Lancaster, around $20 million, but that’s not all. William will also get any inheritance from his grandmother, Queen Elizabeth, and his father, Prince Charles, by the time he’s king. So basically, William will be rolling in cash once his coronation rolls around, and that’s not even including any fine jewelry and other estates he might receive.
Prince William won't have to bow to anyone when he becomes king
Though it might just be a small change, one thing Prince William can look forward to when he ascends to the throne is one less etiquette rule he’ll have to follow. Specifically, William won’t have to bow to anyone anymore when he becomes king.
While it is royal etiquette to bow to the queen when you meet her, or whoever is the current British monarch, that will change for William when takes the throne. Before, William would have to bow to all other senior rural family members such as his grandmother, Queen Elizabeth, and his father, Prince Charles. After that, there will be no more of that (via Express). And as for William’s wife, Kate Middleton will only have to curtsy to him, and no one else (via Cafe Mom).
But while the monarch of Britain doesn’t have to bow to anyone else in the royal family, the rules differ when they meet members of other royal families across the world, as noted by Insider. Still, once he’s king, Prince William can kiss bowing goodbye. Mostly.
A new Prime Minister could be appointed when Prince William becomes king
While Prince William still won’t be able to create laws or change too much when he becomes King of England, one thing he will be able to do is possibly appoint a new Prime Minister. Really, it’s complicated, but the king or queen is pretty involved with the Prime Minister, which makes sense, as they’re both important figures in Britain.
But, as it stands, this important royal duty is only executed under certain circumstances. Specifically, according to the Royal UK website, the king or queen appoints the Prime Minister when necessary, as well as meets with them on official business whenever it’s required.
So, when William takes over the duties of King of England, he may also appoint a new Prime Minister, which would be a pretty big deal. That’s just one more way in which his life will be different after his coronation.
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