BRI­TAIN DI­VIDED OVER FU­TURE OF MONAR­CHY

Daily Express - - Front Page - By Giles Sheldrick Chief Re­porter

A SHOCK poll has re­vealed the cri­sis of public con­fi­dence fac­ing the Royal Fam­ily with Bri­tons split over its fu­ture role in the wake of Meghan and Harry’s dra­matic de­par­ture.

Our ex­clu­sive sur­vey shows that less than half of young adults now

Women are sig­nif­i­cantly more likely than men to agree that their opin­ion of Kate has be­come more favourable in light of Harry and Meghan’s exit from the Royal fam­ily (33% ver­sus 26%)

Over half of adults aged 55+ (55%) agree that Harry has made a mis­take step­ping back from the Royal Fam­ily, in com­par­i­son to less than a quar­ter of those aged 18-34 (24%)

be­lieve that the monar­chy is “good for the UK”, rais­ing se­ri­ous ques­tions about how it con­tin­ues to func­tion.

While the monar­chy still has stead­fast back­ing among the older gen­er­a­tion and over­all 61 per cent think it ben­e­fits Bri­tain, the slump in sup­port among younger peo­ple will cause con­cern in the wake of Harry and Meghan’s de­ci­sion to step down from royal du­ties and live in Canada.

The poll also shows that nearly half of those ques­tioned think the monar­chy should be slimmed down.

In what will be a huge jolt to Buck­ing­ham Palace of­fi­cials still reel­ing from the con­sti­tu­tional cri­sis cre­ated by Harry and Meghan’s de­ci­sion, the Sa­vanta ComRes poll com­mis­sioned for the Daily Ex­press to­day re­veals:

● Just 48 per cent of those aged be­tween 18-34 agree the monar­chy is good for the UK, while 73 per cent of those aged 55 think it is.

● 47 per cent think the monarch should be re­duced in size, while only 15 per cent dis­agreed.

● 44 per cent say it is un­ac­cept­able for Harry and Meghan to trade on their royal back­ground for com­mer­cial gain while only 27 per cent said it was ac­cept­able.

Fired

● 40 per cent think Harry has made a mis­take re­lin­quish­ing his roy­alty with 31 per cent sup­port­ing his move.

● 45 per cent want Wil­liam to be­come the next monarch ahead of Charles with 20 per cent dis­agree­ing.

Dickie Ar­biter, former press sec­re­tary to the Queen, said last night: “As ex­pected there is a di­vide be­tween 18-34 year olds and over 55s but taken as a whole over 50 per cent think Harry and Meghan were wrong. I hap­pen to agree.

“There is no ques­tion the UK gets pretty good value for money out of the monar­chy [but] with Prince An­drew ef­fec­tively fired from royal du­ties and Harry and Meghan hav­ing walked off into the sun­set to be­come fi­nan­cially in­de­pen­dent, slim it down any fur­ther and there won’t be any­body left.”

The re­sults are the first clear as­sess­ment of public opin­ion on the Royal Fam­ily and its rel­e­vance in mod­ern Bri­tain after a tu­mul­tuous few weeks for the House of Wind­sor in which the sixth in line to the throne dropped his bomb­shell and an­nounced to the world he and his fam­ily were ef­fec­tively leav­ing the Royal Fam­ily.

In a re­mark­able public state­ment they said they were quit­ting to be­come fi­nan­cially in­de­pen­dent but, ac­cord­ing to the poll, a sig­nif­i­cant pro­por­tion of peo­ple think they were wrong to do so and as a con­se­quence would like to see a slimmed-down ver­sion of the monar­chy.

Harry’s de­ci­sion to turn his back on royal du­ties deeply up­set the Queen and has rocked the monar­chy to its core, rais­ing ques­tions about its role in 21st-cen­tury

Bri­tain. The public re­sponse to his stance high­lights the gen­er­a­tional di­vide in opin­ion. More than half of adults aged 55 and over agree he made a mis­take, com­pared to less than a quar­ter of those aged 18-34. It has also led to a surge of sup­port for the Duke and Duchess of Cam­bridge with many be­liev­ing the monar­chy now has an op­por­tu­nity to re­new it­self by skip­ping a gen­er­a­tion when the Queen’s reign ends.While Kate has seen a

Pic­ture: PA

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