Unauthorised biography claims Britain’s Prince Charles is lavish spender, obsessed with popularity | books | Hindustan Times
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Unauthorised biography claims Britain’s Prince Charles is lavish spender, obsessed with popularity

A new unauthorised biography of Prince Charles, titled Rebel Prince: The Power, Passion and Defiance of Prince Charles, depicts the heir to the British throne as a lavish spender given to sudden changes in mood.

books Updated: Mar 24, 2018 12:07 IST
Press Trust of India
Prince Charles and his wife Camilla Parker Bowles during their visit to India. The books claims that after Diana’s death, his approval rating crashed to four per cent and has been only rescued by his marriage to Camilla.
Prince Charles and his wife Camilla Parker Bowles during their visit to India. The books claims that after Diana’s death, his approval rating crashed to four per cent and has been only rescued by his marriage to Camilla. (Rishi Ballabh/ Hindustan Times)

The heir to the British throne has been painted as a lavish spender given to sudden changes in mood in a new unauthorised biography of Prince Charles. Rebel Prince: The Power, Passion and Defiance of Prince Charles by Tom Bower claims to be based on interviews with more than 120 people associated with the 69-year-old, who collectively reveal a royal household rife with ‘intrigue and misconduct’.

“Despite his hard work and genuine concern for the disadvantaged, he has struggled to overcome his unpopularity. After Diana’s death, his approval rating crashed to four per cent and has been only rescued by his marriage to Camilla. Nevertheless, just one third of Britons now support him to be the next king,” notes the book.

The biography alleges that Charles once took a trip on the royal train from his Highgrove estate in Gloucestershire to Penrith in Cumbria to visit a pub, at a cost of nearly 18,916 pounds. On another occasion, the author claims the Prince of Wales brought his own mattress, toilet seat, toilet paper and two “landscapes of the Scottish Highlands” when visiting a friend in north-east England. When he leaves one of his six homes across the UK, including Clarence House, Charles reportedly travels with a large staff including a butler, two valets, chef, private secretary, typist and bodyguards.

Bower, who has previously written unauthorised biographies of other famous figures such as former British Prime Minister Tony Blair, claims that Charles “presides at the centre of a court with no place for democracy or dissenting views...like some feudal lord”.

The eldest son of Queen Elizabeth II reportedly told a visitor of his mother: “Mama down the road reads newspapers; I don’t. It would drive me mad.”

The book, which claims the prince is obsessed with public opinion, is presented as a “probe” into the character and court of the Charles that “no one, until now, has seen”. Charles himself is quoted as saying in 2004: “Nobody knows what utter hell it is to be Prince of Wales.”

Bower, a self-proclaimed monarchist, concludes that the princes legacy has been “tarnished by his addiction to luxury, his financial mismanagement, his disloyalty to professional supporters, and the torrid relationships with his family”.

Clarence House, the office of Prince Charles, has said that no comment will be issued on the allegations made in the book.

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