Prescott backs Charles over letters
Lord Prescott has defended the Prince of Wales' right to "write as many damn letters as he likes", as he spoke of correspondence he has received from the future king.
The former deputy prime minister, writing in the Sunday Mirror, said he cannot see a problem with Charles writing to government ministers, a dding that the royal has "a lot to offer this country".
Last month the Supreme Court upheld a ruling which paved the way for the publication of so-called "black spider" memos penned between September 2004 and March 2005 and sent by Charles to seven government departments.
Lord Prescott, whose letters are separate to those due to be released, said that while he is "not a raving loyalist", he has "a lot of time for Charles" who he described as a passionate environmentalist.
He said while he listens to the views of everyone who contacts him on political matters, he makes his own decisions.
He said: " Charles has an awful lot to offer this country. And if he wants to serve his subjects by helping young people into work, combating climate change and building sustainable communities, he can write as many damn letters as he likes."
Lord Prescott published a quote from a letter Charles wrote inviting him to a meeting which the Labour politician had suggested should be set up between the prince's charitable foundation and leaders of the Regional Development Agencies.
He also received a handwritten note from the prince in 2003 when Lord Prescott's mother died.
Charles has long been accused of "bombarding" ministers with "black spider" memos attacking government policy. His letters are so-named after his distinctive handwriting and abundant use of underlining and exclamation marks.
Both Clarence House and the Prime Minister expressed disappointment after the court ruling.
The notes reflect, according to previous attorney general Dominic Grieve, the prince's "most deeply held personal views and beliefs".