Watch the full interview with Prince Charles’ former butler Grant Harrold on Yahoo News UK’s brand new show The Royal Box from midday on Friday, 8 June at the bottom of this article.
A self-proclaimed feminist, a divorcee and a bi-racial American, Meghan Markle is undoubtedly a breath of fresh air for the British royal family.
Her approachable demeanour and the easy way she’s interacted with members of the public so far have proved just how at ease she is in her new role – the role of a lifetime for the former ‘Suits’ star.
And her behaviour could well be helping to secure the future of the royals, says Grant Harrold, Prince Charles’ former butler.
“There was a fantastic image of [Meghan] with a child that wants to be an actress,” Grant tells Yahoo News UK’s The Royal Box, recalling a headline-hitting moment during Meghan and Harry’s Birmingham visit in March.
“Prince Harry took [Meghan] over to see her and she went down and hugged her.”
“There was an image of Princess Diana many years prior doing the same thing. Going down to the same level, giving a hug,” Grant continues. “So it’s really significant and I think that’s the future of the monarchy and why it will survive.
“It’s showing the monarchy has adapted, it’s changed. We’ve still got the traditions and the protocol thanks to the Queen and the senior members of the family, but the younger, senior members have a different way of doing it and it’s fine.
Thanks to her celebrity status prior to becoming a member of the royal family, Meghan has racked up a good deal of experience with the public that has helped ease her into her new role.
“Luckily for Meghan with her background in charity and her public profile, she’s already got that persona which works really well for her, ” says Grant. “It’s clear in the way she interacts with people and talks to them.”
Meghan also has developed a elegant way to diffuse difficult situations.
“When people come up to her and ask for autographs and selfies, which she’s not allowed to give, you see how she tries to deflect that. But she does it in a very graceful way,” Grant explains.
“She deals with it beautifully, she’s not rude about it. I think she just makes in into a humanist thing, and wins people over with her grace and charm.”
Because of her warm manner and charitable work, numerous comparisons have been drawn between Meghan and the late Princess of Wales.
“There’s a lot of love and affection for Meghan,” says Grant. “People, both here in the UK and in America, adore her and Harry. She’s got this very extraordinary way about her.
“Kate’s already established her role as a future Queen and she does that beautifully whereas Meghan is going to have to work that out. There are always going to be similarities. Everyone always says that in your partner you pick traces that remind you of your parents and it’s not always intentional. So I think to an extent that’s what has happened here.”
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