Yes, the British Royal Family Actually Works. Here’s What They Do.
If you dream about living like a prince or princess, you’d better look to Disney, because in real life the British Royal family attends thousands of engagements a year while leading charities, taking care of children, and even working 9 to 5.
Queen Elizabeth trained as a mechanic
The most famous royal in the world, Queen Elizabeth II, is quite busy for a nonagenarian. “Cabbage,” as she is affectionately called by her husband, attends numerous engagements entertaining heads of state, having palace parties, taking diplomatic trips, and more, Business Insider reports. Queen Elizabeth attended 385 engagements in 2016. And this 91-year-old keeps on going. Royal commentator Richard Fitzwilliams told Express.co.uk last year: “She [the Queen] and the Duke of Edinburgh, at 90 and 95 respectively, are unique in over 1,000 years of monarchy and their dedication to duty, and their commitment continues as it has in previous years. So does their robust health, which permits them to undertake so many duties.” There’s no time for knitting in a rocking chair for this great-grandmother who has taken her duty as queen seriously for 65 years, this past June marking her Sapphire Jubilee. But even before she was crowned, Elizabeth pulled her weight for her country. During World War II, the then 18-year-old princess joined the Women’s Auxiliary Territorial Service and, according to History.com, clipped on her tool belt to get down and dirty as a mechanic and truck driver for the military. The Queen is the only living head of state who served in WWII and remains the only female member of the royal family to serve in the armed forces. Here is how much the British royal family is actually worth.
The Duke of Edinburgh is a pro at unveiling plaques
As the Queen’s better half of 70 years this November, Prince Phillip is no slacker, but this summer, the 96-year-old will retire and it’s well-deserved. The Duke of Edinburgh consistently accompanied his bride (and third cousin) on many of her engagements, not to mention the 22,191 he attended on his own. He calls himself the “world’s most experienced plaque unveiler” with 5,493 speeches to under his belt. Post-retirement he plans to continue working with the 780 organizations with which he’s involved. According to the Dailymail.com, Prince Philip will attend a Royal Marines’ charity parade to mark the end of his public duties. In a statement, Buckingham Palace said, “The Captain General’s Parade will bring His Royal Highness’s individual program to a conclusion, although he may choose to attend certain events, alongside The Queen, from time to time.”
The Prince of Wales is a filmmaker
The job description on the official royal website for Charles & Camilla isn’t something you can apply for, but it certainly sounds like a lot to live up to: “Undertaking official Royal duties in support of Her Majesty The Queen and on behalf of Her Majesty’s Government, working as a charitable entrepreneur, by supporting charitable and civil causes which promote positive social and environmental outcomes and promoting and protecting national traditions, virtues, and excellence.” Not only is Charles committed to attending various royal engagements like his dear old mum, but at the request of the British Government he’s been asked to further British diplomatic interests with visits overseas. And when he’s home he heads up 13 of his own charities, including The Prince’s Trust, The British Asian Trust, and Business in the Community. He is a well-known environmentalist and has introduced many sustainability initiatives, including reducing food waste and organic farming, to many of the royal homes and grounds, and he made the movie Harmony: A New Way of Looking at Our World. As for the Duchess of Cornwall, in addition to supporting her hubby at engagements, Camilla is also involved with many charities and events.
The Duke and Duchess Cambridge are college grads
Royal parents to toddlers George and Charlotte and baby Louis, both William and Kate have had their hands full changing nappies (that’s diapers to Americans). Now with Prince Philip retiring and the Queen staying closer to home they will continue to combine parenthood with royal duties full time. Last October, with children in tow, William and Kate took an 8-day jaunt through Canada. And now that Prince William has flown his last run for the East Anglian air ambulance, for which he has been a pilot since 2015, the family will soon be heading off on another official tour, to Poland and Germany. According to ABC News, William and Kate valued the normalcy that William’s job as an air ambulance pilot allowed their family. It’s not like the prince or princess didn’t have other plans for the future. After all they hooked up while studying at St. Andrews University, where both graduated with honors, William earning a degree in geography and Kate in art history. According to the L.A. Times, the prince is one of only three British royals in recent history to graduate from college.
For Kate, finding a job before the two were betrothed wasn’t easy, as any position she took was scrutinized by the royal family, plus she had to be able to “call in sick” for last minute royal obligations. According to Biography.com, Kate did eventually land a job at a store in London as assistant accessories’ buyer. She went on to study portrait photography and then almost started a cake company with her brother. To think Britain could have had it’s very own Cake Boss or rather Cake Princess! These are the words you will never hear the royal family say.
Princess Anne is an Olympian
If engagement attendance was an Olympic event, Princess Anne would get a gold medal. After all, the 66-years young Anne has never been one to dodge a challenge, remaining the only royal to ever compete in the real Olympics as an equestrian. Although she didn’t win gold, she continues to carry a reputation as one of the hardest working royals. That Olympic work ethic extends far after the competition with these athletes, so it’s easy to see where Anne gets her drive. According to the Sunday Express she attended 640 engagements in 2016, more than any other royal. But the sometimes stern daughter of the Queen also makes time to play doting grandma to her five grandchildren.
Prince Harry was a dedicated serviceman
As a teen, this royal ginger was a bit of a wildcat, but he settled down by serving in the armed forces with two deployments to Afghanistan. He held the rank of lieutenant since 2008 and was promoted to Captain in 2011. After ending his active service Harry continued to volunteer for the army in support of wounded servicemen. Besides keeping busy by supporting a mix of charitable causes, like his brother, he takes his royal duties very seriously. In fact, according to Stock News USA, in conjunction with William and Kate, Harry is looking to hire some help. Supposedly, all three royals are seeking an experienced press officer to promote their royal responsibilities, especially their charity-related activities. Here are the myths about the royal family that are totally false.
The Earl of Wessex is interested in the arts
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Before both becoming full-time working royals, Edward, the Queen’s youngest son, and wife Sophie, had full-time jobs. Edward worked for a theater company while Sophie ran a PR firm. This year alone they attended a whopping 700 engagements. To keep his spot on the royal ladder the Queen has decreed that Prince Edward will eventually inherit the title Duke of Edinburgh from his father.
The Duke of York took an early retirement
Since quitting his role as the UK’s special representative for international trade and investment, Prince Andrew, the Duke of York, has taken his lead from his mum, the Queen. He continues to taken on royal duties and supports charities of his own choosing.
Princesses Beatrice and Eugenie are hard-working social butterflies
Andrew’s daughters, the Princesses Beatrice and Eugenie, have everyday jobs, according to Harper’s Bazaar. Eugenie is an associate director at the art gallery Hauser & Wirth in London, while Beatrice “works full time in the business world,” according to her website. A Palace source described the princesses this way: “They are working girls who have jobs. They will appear at family occasions and at some receptions at the Palace, but there will be no change in their status.” Like others in the royal family, they remain involved with charities but otherwise aren’t as much in the public eye performing royal duties. Rather, they are known for attending society functions, being spotted in nightclubs, and taking exotic vacations. Although she has a degree in history, Beatrice has gone through four jobs in only a five-year span. Eugenie graduated Newcastle University with degrees in both English literature and art history. Next, check out the surprisingly frugal habits of the royal family.