William’s children could write history, Lady Antonia Fraser says
The author joined the Order of the Companions of Honour at an investiture.
The Duke of Cambridge’s children could be budding historians, Lady Antonia Fraser has told him.
Lady Antonia, famed for her biographies and marriage to playwright Harold Pinter, returned to Buckingham Palace to become a member of the Order of the Companions of Honour.
Despite having already been made a dame, she admitted feeling “just as nervous” ahead her return trip to Buckingham Palace where she received recognition for services to literature.
“It is a great honour, and it’s a pleasure,” she said.
The historian said William had been keen to know whether her interest in the subject began in childhood, telling how his own children are avid readers.
She said: “He asked me whether I’d always been interested in history as a child and so I said: ‘Yes, I used to write history as a child, so look out’, meaning your (William’s) own children.
He (the Duke of Cambridge) said his father, the Prince of Wales, said he didn’t read enough history and I said well that can be remedied Lady Antonia Fraser
“And he said his own children are always reading books. He was very sweet and charming, as a father.”
The prince also joked that he had been gently scolded by his own father for not reading enough history, she said.
“He said his father, the Prince of Wales, said he didn’t read enough history and I said well that can be remedied,” she said, laughing.
“He was altogether delightful, natural.”
Also honoured were former national security adviser Sir Mark Lyall Grant, awarded a Knight Grand Cross under the Most Distinguished Order of Saint Michael and Saint George, for his services to UK foreign and national security policy.
Sir Mark, who retired last year, said: “It’s a very special privilege to receive the honour at the end of my public career, my Government career.
“As I move to a new phase of my life it’s very nice to feel that I’ve been recognised for the things I’ve done over the last 35 years working for the Government.”
Sir Craig Mackey, deputy commissioner of the Metropolitan Police Service, said he still felt shocked to have been knighted for his services to policing.
He said: “(I am) a little bit still in shock, excited, very proud and very proud for policing.”
He said the honour is one he accepted on behalf of all those who work to keep the country safe.
He said: “This is about policing.
“There are very, very many men and women across the country who do an outstanding job on a daily basis and I’m fortunate to be part of that team.”
Bazil Meade, of the London Community Gospel Choir, some members of which had sung at the wedding of the Duke and Duchess of Sussex, said William described the performance at St George’s Chapel last month as “amazing”.
Mr Meade, made an MBE for his services to the development of British Gospel music, said he felt it had been a “powerful statement” to have a gospel choir at a British royal wedding.
He said: “I think it was such a powerful statement having a gospel choir involved because we are at the heart of the African Caribbean community and it shows to the world the diversity that is present here.
“It has done a great deal I think to bring the royal family into the heart of the people.”
A minute’s silence was observed in Buckingham Palace’s ballroom, where the investiture ceremony took place, in memory of those killed in the Grenfell Tower fire.
William observed the silence, commemorating the one-year anniversary of the tragedy that claimed 72 lives, privately ahead of the ceremony which began shortly after 11am.