26 SEPTEMBER 2003
The Prince of Wales has scrapped plans to issue a "mission statement", after his companion Camilla Parker Bowles told him it was a bad idea.
The future king had been planning to publish a document setting out his role as heir to the throne. Aides believed the statement, which was dubbed "the alternative Queen's speech" by courtiers, would help improve his public image. The idea was to focus more attention on the Prince's charity work and his service to voluntary organisations.
But sources at Clarence House have revealed that Camilla strongly objected. "She felt that he's been around long enough as Prince of Wales and had no need to explain to people who he was and what he did," a friend was quoted as saying.
The decision comes after a financial report, which was intended to portray the Prince as a frugal spender, backfired. Clarence House had been hoping to show the 55-year-old was a man of modest tastes, but Charles suffered a press backlash after it was revealed he spends £2 million a year on himself and his sons.