Royal duties on 13 days for Prince William so far this year

Prince William has spent just 13 days this year carrying out royal duties, according to the Court Circular.

The Duke of Cambridge's duties in the first 72 days of the year were compiled, according to an examination by the Press Association of the daily record of royal engagements.

These duties included two investitures on behalf of the Queen, an India-UK cultural reception, the service unveiling the Iraq and Afghanistan memorial and Heads Together events with the Duchess of Cambridge and Prince Harry.

But it was his absence from Monday's Commonwealth Day festivities that has raised eyebrows.

The day included a service in which the Commonwealth Games baton set off from Buckingham Palace and is considered one of the most significant in the royal calendar.

The Queen's baton is on a 388-day relay across more than 140,000 miles and will visit every Commonwealth nation on its way to the hosts, Australia's Gold Coast next year.

Prince Harry, Prince Charles, Prince Philip and the Queen were among the royals present at the event but William, who has only attended twice previously, was in Switzerland.

William skipped his duties in favour of a skiing trip with friends in the resort of Verbier.

Graham Smith, chief executive of anti-monarchy campaigners Republic, said: "William clearly isn't that interested in taking his role seriously, and I wonder if he really wants to be king.

"The taxpayer has stumped up millions of pounds to give him a palatial London home and provide round-the-clock security - expecting him to do something for the country in return.

"If he's not interested in fulfilling his side of the bargain we should kick him out of Kensington Palace and insist he pays his own way."

William's wife Kate, who was not on the skiing trip, has performed royal duties on 12 days and Harry did 17 days.

Despite turning 91 next month, the Queen carried out royal engagements on 24 days, also working every day on official papers contained in her red boxes.

Last year, Prince William was criticised for being "work-shy" but he insisted he took his royal responsibilities "very seriously".

William has said he will begin full-time royal duties this summer after finishing his time as an air ambulance helicopter pilot.

He and Kate are then expected to increase their charity work and official duties on behalf of the Queen.

Ingrid Seward, editor-in-chief of Majesty magazine, said: "I am sure that if he was expected to be (at the Commonwealth Day ceremony) then he would have been.

"I don't see that there was a real need for William to have been present.

"He does a huge amount of work, he attends a lot of events and is very dedicated - he's allowed to have a bit of time off."

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