Kate Middleton faces 'big decision' on royal appearance amid cancer treatment

Some of the royals on the Buckingham Palace balcony after Trooping the Colour 2023
-Credit: (Image: PA)


The grand finale of Trooping the Colour, a key event in the Royal calendar, traditionally sees a throng of royals gathered on the Buckingham Palace balcony.

However, this year's spectacle may present a more sparse gathering for the magnificent RAF flypast. In keeping with the precedent set over the past two years, it is anticipated that King Charles will invite only working royals to join him for the culmination of his birthday festivities.

This would mean younger royals such as Princesses Beatrice and Eugenie, along with Prince Harry and Meghan Markle, who are likely to stay in California, may not be present. Amidst the pared-down family appearance, there's a chance that even the most beloved member of the Firm might be absent, reports the Mirror.

The Princess of Wales is currently undergoing preventative cancer treatment and her attendance at Trooping has yet to be confirmed. Nevertheless, it is understood she may consider making an appearance if she feels up to it.

Kensington Palace has confirmed that the Princess will not officially participate in the final dress rehearsal for the King's birthday celebrations on June 8, but did not dismiss the possibility of her attending the main event a week later.

Royal historian and expert Dr Tessa Dunlop regards Kate as "British royalty at its best". Her decision on whether or not to attend could inevitably spark "futile" questions about Harry and Meghan, who are now "out of the picture".

Meghan Markle stands beside Prince Harry who is dressed in royal uniform
Harry and Meghan at Trooping the Colour in 2019 -Credit:Getty Images

She explained: "Whether [Kate] will make a balcony appearance on the big day on June 15 remains the great unknown. My hunch is she will give us a wave, but if she doesn't (entirely her prerogative) questions about Harry and Meghan are bound to surface.

"These are futile, even in 2022 the Sussexes were out of the picture, glimpsed briefly at a window and not invited on the balcony.

"This year that balcony cast will have even slimmer pickings if the Princess of Wales stays away. In which case might it be time to review the role of non-working royals?

"All those cousins Eugenie, Beatrice, and Zara who have long behaved with hallmark loyalty would surely relish the prospect of standing shoulder to shoulder with their King. After all, isn't that what families are for?"

Meanwhile, Tessa noted that this year's Trooping the Colour will demonstrate how much has altered for the Royal Family - even within just one year. She elaborated: "2024 is not royal service as usual. And nor should it be.

"Our most glamorous royal player, like her father-in-law and King, has cancer and health must come first. But let's not pretend Kate won't be missed at Trooping the Colour.

"The King's official birthday parade ties us back through time to centuries of pomp and ceremony. No one does that better than the Princess of Wales, who in the last decade has owned the stage as Britain's most eye-catching stateswoman.

"The last Trooping the Colour I attended was that bittersweet summer of 2022, the late Queen's Platinum Jubilee. Too frail for Horse Guards Parade, Her Majesty popped out on the balcony.

"It was the climax to a great day which saw Charles, then Prince of Wales, on horseback and a Disney moment when, in a pop of colour, Princess Catherine fluttered by in a horse-drawn carriage. The crowd gasped. This was British royalty at its best.

"Much can change in two short years. The new King will be present for his birthday parade, but won't review the troops on horseback. There are limits when undergoing cancer treatment at age 75.

"Likewise for the Princess of Wales, things look very different in 2024. She has climbed the ranks, and with her new honorary role as Colonel of the Irish Guards ordinarily, she would have taken the salute. But these are not ordinary times. Kate won't attend the Colonel's Review (Trooping's rehearsal on 8 June)."

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