Prince William must keep the royal family on track

Henry

With his father, King Charles III undergoing treatment for cancer, and his wife, Catherine, recovering from an operation, Britain’s Prince Williams will resume his royal duties on Wednesday.

The king’s shock cancer diagnosis, which was announced on Monday, and Catherine’s earlier abdominal surgery, means William now has to take on a heavy royal burden.

William, 41, Charles’ eldest son and heir to the throne, has suspended all public engagement to support his wife, the Princess of Wales, and their three children after she was admitted to hospital on January 16.

However, he will be back at work on Wednesday, presenting honors to deserving Britons at Windsor Castle before attending the London Air Ambulance’s annual fundraiser in central London.

He is also expected to take over some of his father’s duties while the king undergoes treatment. Senior royals such as Princess Anne and Charles’ wife Queen Camilla will help shoulder the burden.

Buckingham Palace did not give details about the type of cancer the 75-year-old monarch has, but it is understood not to be prostate cancer.

The British Prime Minister, Rishi Sunak, said earlier that the cancer was “picked up early”.

The diagnosis comes just 17 months after he ascended the throne, following the death of his 96-year-old mother, Queen Elizabeth II, on September 8, 2022.

Deep divisions

Adding to the drama, the king’s estranged son Prince Harry returned to Britain from the US on Tuesday.

Shortly afterwards, a relaxed Charles was seen leaving his residence, Clarence House, in London for Sandringham, his country estate in the east of England.

The news immediately sparked speculation that the events could act as a catalyst to heal the deep divisions that marred the start of Charles’ reign.

However, royal commentator Richard Fitzwilliams described the rift between Harry, the Duke of Sussex, and the rest of the family as “very deep”.

Harry has a particularly conflicted relationship with his brother William.

Many sympathized with William, who now has to balance the double burden of his responsibilities to his family with his official duties.

“He’s got a tough job because his wife is sick at this stage and it’s putting pressure on poor William, but I’m sure he can handle it,” pensioner Sue Hazell said outside Buckingham Palace.

Kate is expected to be out of action until at least the end of March, Kensington Palace said earlier. Palace officials did not release any details about her surgery, other than to say it was not related to cancer.

King Charles has also been praised for speaking openly about his medical condition. This is a change from the royal house’s earlier attitude; they have been extremely discreet about any personal medical issues in the past.