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Former Archbishop of Canterbury discusses Charles and Diana's marriage
Former Archbishop of Canterbury George Carey who was ‘pitched in to help’ with ‘deep thinking’ Charles and ‘less driven’ Diana’s marriage says they were never going to be ‘successful’
- George Carey was the most senior cleric from 1991 to 2002
- READ MORE: Queen sent Prince Andrew to do ‘his duty’ in the Falklands War but ‘a very irritated’ Charles ‘wasn’t allowed’ and was ‘left in the shadows’, new docuseries claims – echoing decision made for Princes Harry and William
The former Archbishop of Canterbury who was ‘pitched in to help’ with King Charles and Princess Diana’s marriage has suggested they were never going to be ‘successful’ in a new royal docuseries.
George Carey, who was the most senior cleric from 1991 to 2002, tells ITVX’s The Real Crown: Inside the House of Windsor how he was called in to try and rescue the couple’s turbulent relationship.
He says: ‘I found myself as the Archbishop of Canterbury pitched in to this. I remember one meeting at Number 10 Downing Street with [former Prime Minister] John Major and some members of the Cabinet, wrestling with what we could do to help.’
‘The role I took was to try and meet up,’ adds Lord Carey, who claims the ‘dynamic between’ Charles and Diana, then the Prince and Princess of Wales, ‘was not going to be successful’.
He continues: ‘Charles deep thinking, a slower personality, reflective. Diana, dynamic, vibrant, less driven, it wasn’t going to work.’
The former Archbishop of Canterbury who was ‘pitched in to help’ with King Charles and Princess Diana’s (pictured in 1992 in South Korea) marriage has suggested they were never going to be ‘successful’ in a new royal docuseries
For centuries, Archbishops of Canterbury have been entrusted with helping members of the Royal Family tackle some of the trickiest issues of the day.
Perhaps most famously, Henry VIII and Thomas Cranmer wrestled with the King’s demand to divorce Anne Boleyn. Cranmer succeeded.
More recently, his modern-day successor, Justin Welby, was asked by King Charles to broker a deal to allow Prince Harry to attend his Coronation – but met resistance from Prince William, The Mail on Sunday revealed.
Charles wanted Mr Welby to strike an agreement with his warring sons that would allow Harry and his wife Meghan to attend the Westminster Abbey ceremony in May, senior sources close to Lambeth Palace say.
It was confirmed last week that Prince Harry will attend the Coronation alone, while his wife Meghan Markle, 41, stays in California with their children, Prince Archie and Princess Lilibet, one.
The Coronation, which is just three weeks away, will see both King Charles III and Queen Camilla crowned in front of 2,000 people in Westminster Abbey.
George Carey (pictured), who was the most senior cleric from 1991 to 2002, tells ITVX’s The Real Crown: Inside the House of Windsor how he was called in to try and rescue the couple’s turbulent relationship
Elsewhere in the ITVX programme, the Queen is said to have wanted Prince Andrew to fight in the Falklands War because she believed it was his duty to do so while a member of the British Armed Forces – but his brother Charles ‘wasn’t allowed’.
Speaking in the series, General Sir Mike Jackson, former head of the British Army, discusses how Elizabeth II was keen for the Duke of York, now 63, to take part in the South Atlantic conflict in 1982.
Sir Mike, then a lieutenant colonel involved in defence intelligence during the Falklands campaign, said in the third episode: ‘The Queen would take the view that a member of her family who had joined the armed forces… they must do their duty.’
However following Andrew’s victorious return after the ten-week conflict, King Charles, then the Prince of Wales, was ‘again left slightly in the shadows’, according to Lady Anne Glenconner, the late Princess Margaret’s lady-in-waiting.
She tells the documentary that Charles ‘was not allowed to go to war because it would’ve been too dangerous’ – a decision which echos the one made by Her late Majesty regarding Princes Harry and William.
The Queen wanted both William and Harry to fight the Taliban in Afghanistan when war broke out in 2001, before deciding it was too risky to send the future heir to the throne, Sir Mike revealed in a later episode of the docuseries.
Elsewhere in the ITVX programme, the Queen is said to have wanted Prince Andrew to fight in the Falklands War because she believed it was his duty to do so while a member of the British Armed Forces – but his brother Charles ‘wasn’t allowed’, a new docuseries has revealed. Pictured, Charles and Andrew in 2012
The decision over whether the princes should take part in the conflict was discussed at a meeting between the late Elizabeth II and Sir Mike, then head of the British Army.
In the upcoming documentary, airing on April 20, Sir Mike breaches protocol by revealing details of his private audience with the Queen.
He said: ‘What goes on in those audiences and who says what to whom remains for the two people involved, and I will break the rule about not divulging what goes on on this one occasion.
‘She was very clear. She said, “My grandsons have taken my shilling, therefore they must do their duty”. And that was that. But it was decided that William as heir to the heir, the risk is too great. But for his younger brother, the risk was acceptable.’
Harry served in the Army for ten years, rising to the rank of Captain and undertaking two operational tours of duty in Afghanistan, in 2007-8 and 2012-13.
The documentary shows that William was stopped from joining the war, despite wanting to, due to his position as future King.
Similarly, the Queen let her second eldest son, Andrew, take part in active service in a war, with Sir Mike explaining: ‘A member of the Royal Family killed in military action will have considerable politic knock-ons.
Queen Elizabeth ll gives Prince Andrew a rose which he promptly puts in his mouth after they have disembarked from HMS Invincible following his return from the Falklands War on September 17, 1982 in Portsmouth
‘But the Queen would take the view that a member of her family who had joined the Armed Forces, had undertaken the same contract as others sailors, soldiers and airmen and that they must do their duty.’
Andrew joined the Royal Navy in 1979 and served for 22 years, including the Falklands War in 1982, in which he served aboard HMS Invincible as a Sea King helicopter pilot.
Charles, who has not served in an active war, was left ‘slightly in the shadows’ after his younger brother’s success in the Falklands, according to Lady Anne Glenconner.
She said: ‘It must be very irritating for Charles, who’d been in the Navy, not allowed to go to war because it would’ve been too dangerous.
‘There’s Prince Andrew, had an amazing war, came back a hero with a rose between his teeth, looking frightfully handsome, everybody thought how wonderful and again poor Charles, slightly in the shadows.’
According to royal biographer Gyles Brandreth, Charles ‘regrets’ not being ‘tested in action’, reported The Express.
In his book Charles and Camilla: Portrait of a Love Affair (2005), Mr Brandreth wrote: ‘He [Charles] did well. His men liked him and, by every account, respected his modesty, seriousness and determination.
‘A few years later, at the time of the Falklands conflict in 1982, Charles expressed regret that during his own service career he had not been “tested in action” as his younger brother, Andrew, had been while serving with the Fleet Air Arm in the South Atlantic.’
Charles began his military service on the guided-missile destroyer HMS Norfolk in 1971.
He then served on two frigates: HMS Minerva from 1972 to 1974 and HMS Jupiter in 1974. His service ended in 1976, but he continued to pilot occasionally.
He ultimately gave up flying after he crashed a £10million BAE 146 aircraft at Islay in Inner Hebrides in 1994.
Charles grounded himself from flying after the accident, which St James’s Palace said at the time was a ‘personal decision the Prince took on his own’.
The full The Real Crown: Inside The House Of Windsor series is available on Thursday 20 April on ITVX
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