The piece written by Katie Nicholl (anyone heard of her?) declares that the Queen is attempting to establish the monarchy's ties with Scotland ahead of the referendum, and has done so by making Prince William a member of The Order of the Thistle, the second highest order in the United Kingdom, coming, as you would expect, under its English equivalent, The Order of the Garter, of which this 30 year old is also a member.
Of course the Mail is havering, as the Mail is inclined to do. After 60 years of keeping her royal beak out of the sordid business of party politics, the Queen is unlikely to be stupid enough to break that habit now over something which won't actually affect her at all.
There are no plans at present, or likely to be in the future, to make Scotland a republic. None of the parties stands for republicanism, except perhaps the Scottish Socialists, but with no members of parliament, even after an election with showed such disillusionment with Labour, the the royals need have no fear from them. True, there are republicans in Labour and the SNP, possibly even the Liberals, but they are few and far between. So come what may Elizabeth will almost certainly keep her Scottish crown.
In any case I seriously wonder if handing out a gong to her grandson and letting him join the ranks of the extremely privileged in the limited membership of the Order of the Thistle will sway any Scots that are toying with the idea of independence.
I somehow can't image anyone saying... "Well I was thinking of voting for an independent Scotland but now Prince William of Wales, the Duke of Cambridge, is a member of the Thistle, I think I'll just vote to stay British and for our order of chivalry to remain subservient to the English one".
Ms Nicholl may want to apologise to the Queen for attributing her with such a lack of political nous. It's the kind of scheme that a parvenu like Cameron would come up with, while searching for a mislaid child down the pub. Not the idea a woman with 60 years' experience in the job would even consider.
PS: It seems that William will receive £10 million as a 30th birthday present from his mother's will. Oh, how the other half live.
- Sovereign: Elizabeth II
- Knights and Ladies Companion:
- The Earl of Elgin and Kincardine KT CD JP DL (1981)
- The Earl of Airlie KT GCVO PC JP (1985)
- The Viscount of Arbuthnott KT CBE DSC (1996)
- The Earl of Crawford and Balcarres KT GCVO PC DL (1996)
- Lady Marion Fraser LT (1996)
- The Lord Macfarlane of Bearsden KT DL (1996)
- The Lord Mackay of Clashfern KT PC QC (1997)
- The Lord Wilson of Tillyorn KT GCMG (2000)
- The Lord Sutherland of Houndwood KT (2002)
- Sir Eric Anderson KT (2002)
- The Lord Steel of Aikwood KT KBE PC (2004)
- The Lord Robertson of Port Ellen KT GCMG PC (2004)
- The Lord Cullen of Whitekirk KT PC (2007)
- Sir Garth Morrison KT CBE DL (2007)
- The Lord Hope of Craighead KT PC QC (2009)
- The Lord Patel KT (2009)
- Extra Knights and Ladies: