Cry God for Harry, England and Saint George!
By: Matthew Groves – BMS Blogger-in-Residence
Prince Henry of Wales, better known as Prince Harry, is a member of the Royal Family who reaches out to a very broad section of this nation. While the whole Royal Family continues to be very popular, with Her Majesty the Queen in particular being regarded with deep affection for her dignified fulfilment of her role, Prince Harry’s own personality and character give him a unique place in our affections. It could have been he received less attention, given that his place in the line of succession is not direct and even before the birth of Prince George it was always expected that Prince William would bring an heir to the family. Yet despite the fact the focus would more automatically fall on the direct line, Prince Harry has a high profile.
If one calls to mind Kipling’s words, perhaps Prince Harry’s popularity lies in the ability to “walk with kings – nor lose the common touch.” While his occasional high jinx as a young man have sometimes received criticism resulting from that puritanical streak in the English character, his willingness to put his own life on the line for his country speak of real character and grit and undermines such criticism. As a nation we hold him in such affection because we see a young man, passionate about his country, loyal to his friends and comrades and able to reach out across class boundaries. He defies the fake caricature created by republicans of foppish and effete aristocrats. How many of those opinionated Left wingers have faced the mortars in the blood and sand for their country? Prince Harry served on the frontline with the British Army in Afghanistan. He then undertook another tour of Aghanistan as an Apache helicopter pilot.
So this is a young man willing to risk his life for Queen and Country. His commitment to his friends was also demonstrated by his eagerness to return to the front. He has honoured wounded comrades and wounded soldiers everywhere in his walk to the South Pole for Walk with the Wounded. He is a rounded character, with a strong interest in rugby, both playing and watching (he is regularly seen at Twickenham). He plays polo, having played for Young England and the Army. He also enjoys skiing with his father, prince Charles and the Duke of Cambridge. These interests are not something he simply keeps to himself however; Prince Harry strongly believes that sport is important for the young and he is, like all Royals, involved in numerous charities. He also co-founded the charity Sentebale with his friend Prince Seeiso of Lesotho in memory of their mothers (Sentebale means ‘Forget me not’) to support orphans and vulnerable children in Lesotho. Prince Harry is a man of action who is passionate about what he does. The Prince is a credit to both his family and his country! No wonder he is so well liked.