December 1

Those who critizise Prince Charles should ask themselves one thing.

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It is fashionable in elite circles to sneer at the Royal Family.

This is particularly so in relation to Prince Charles.

Remember, as he was about to be married and then again when he went to the US.

On both occasions, the leaders of that sneering claque, the republican journalists, spoke too soon.

As a result of their unrealized projections of, if not disaster, at least boredom of such intensity to keep everyone away, were all unrealized.

They had, as that stalwart of our constitutional system and our Flag, Senator Boswell so superbly put it: “They have egg all over their faces – from head to foot.”

Which brings me to my point – I have never heard of Jools Holland.

When I read in the London Daily Telegraph of 8 November, 2005, that he is the former keyboard player in the band Squeeze and television sidekick of Paula Yates, I was none the wiser.

This reminded me of the occasion when that brilliant advocate and future Lord Chancellor, FE Smith replied to a judge who had said he had read Mr Smith’s submissions but was none the wiser:

“Possibly not, my lord, but no doubt, better informed.”

I was similarly better informed about Mr. Holland who, the Telegraph claimed, was recently described in print as "Britain’s best-connected man".

(You will note that for a newspaper of standing and reliability, the Telegraph is particularly influenced by the fact that the description was “in print”, rather than say, by word of mouth, or for that matter by graffiti sprayed by some lay- about delinquent on public transport.)

In any event, Mr. Holland’s guests at his recent wedding included Ringo Starr, Robbie Coltrane, Stephen Fry and Jennifer Saunders, with the McCartneys flying in for the reception.

Now even I have heard of them, or at least some of them.

His wife is a member of a landed Scottish family. She was, according to the Telegraph, formerly married to the Earl of Durham.

So Mr Holland is one of that modern phenomenon, the celebrity, about whom the media are so enthralled.

And as a celebrity, he is expected to proclaim that he is a “passionate republican” ,evan if as is usually the case , he barely understands what this means.

In addition, he is, as a celebrity, it is mandatory that he sneer about the opponents of republicanism, and of course those monarchical targets, in particular , the Prince of Wales.

But not, it seems, Mr Holland.

Instead , as our parents did, he takes people as he finds them.

Pre-judging people who are posh is as bad as pre-judging people who are black, he says.

"I say: ‘Look at a person’s works’," he adds.

"Before we cast any stones and open our big gobs, we might want to look carefully at what the person we are criticising has done or not done," he says, referring to the Prince of Wales.

The prince, whom he adds is "actually very likeable", could "do a lot less if he wanted to", but works hard for charities such as the Prince’s Trust, with which Holland is involved.

Those who want to criticise the prince should first ask themselves if – like the trust – they’ve done anything like "helping a million teenagers", he says.

"If you haven’t, maybe you should keep your big hooter out of it."

Let’s hear that again.

Those who want to criticise the prince should first ask themselves if – like the trust – they’ve done anything like "helping a million teenagers", he says. "If you haven’t, maybe you should keep your big hooter out of it."

Holland got to know the prince through the trust, for which he is now an "ambassador".

As the Telegraph says, unlike some celebrities and their charity work, Holland can actually talk for more than 10 seconds about its work in helping disadvantaged young people.

That’s a message for the royal-haters, and especially the Charles-haters .

That’s a message for the local commentariat.

If you haven’t helped a million teenagers, just keep your big hooter out of it!

If you haven’t helped a million teenagers, just keep your big hooter out of it!

Until next time,

David Flint 


Tags

Prince Charles, Royal Family


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