Royals

Queen Camilla & Princess Catherine could be shaking up a long-standing royal tradition

Discussions have taken place.
Loading the player...

A long-standing royal tradition that has historically been undertaken by royals-by-birth could be getting a major shake-up.

Reportedly, Queen Camilla and Catherine, Princess of Wales, may begin to distribute honours on behalf of King Charles – a role that has traditionally been reserved for those who were born royal.

Queen Camilla and Princess Catherine in a carriage together
Queen Camilla and Princess Catherine are not royals by birth. (Image: Getty)

The Queen and the Princess of Wales could start to oversee honours ceremonies in the future, and the Daily Mail UK reports that discussions have taken place to alter the current situation.

Considerations of this shake-up were first brought up many years ago, however discussions ceased around the time of the pandemic. Now, the idea has once again been raised.

The number of working royals in the British royal family has significantly shifted since the pandemic, due to Queen Elizabeth II’s passing, Prince Harry’s withdrawal as a senior royal, and most recently due to King Charles III’s cancer diagnosis and Princess Catherine’s health issues.

King Charles smiling
King Charles was diagnosed with cancer in February 2024. (Image: Getty)

The diminishing number of working royals is likely to be a reason for this potential change in royal tradition, as they need as many royal family members as possible to share the load.

The royal diary showcases all of the official engagements the royal family takes part in throughout the calendar year, and there are countless events for each working royal to attend.

Queen Camilla in particular has been partaking in numerous royal engagements recently, most of which she has attended solo, due to King Charles’ public duties being restricted as a result of him undergoing treatment for cancer.

Currently, honours are most frequently given out by King Charles himself, Prince William and Princess Anne, however the change to have Queen Camilla also distribute honours seems a natural progression considering the large number of other engagements she has attended in the King’s name.

King Charles giving honour to Ralph Lauren
Honours are presented to those who have been recognised for excellence in their field, or service. (Image: Getty)

Technically honours are all given in the monarch’s name, however other members of the royal family sometimes present them on his behalf.

Whilst Princess Catherine is still currently recovering from her abdominal surgery and is not expected to return to royal duties until after Easter this year, honours are only announced twice a year so it would be unsurprising to see her at future events.

Presentations occur at the New Year in January and for the King’s Official Birthday in June.

Queen Elizabeth and Prince Philip presenting honour
Prince Philip previously assisted the Queen to hand out honours. (Image: Getty)

In the past, the Queen Mother and Prince Philip also handed out honours, so once again it would make sense for the Queen and Princess of Wales to present honours as well.

Related stories